Rachael Brennan has been working in the insurance industry since 2006 when she began working as a licensed insurance representative for 21st Century Insurance, during which time she earned her Property and Casualty license in all 50 states. After several years she expanded her insurance expertise, earning her license in Health and AD&D insurance as well. She has worked for small health in...

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Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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Reviewed by Jeffrey Johnson
Insurance Lawyer

UPDATED: Jul 14, 2021

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In a nutshell...

  • For many drivers, a suspended license means an end to driving
  • There are circumstances that may require car insurance to be maintained
  • If there is the possibility that you may receive a hardship or restricted license exception, then you will need to maintain active coverage

Car insurance is often a necessity, even for those that have a suspended license. While operating your car with a suspended license is normally not an option, maintaining coverage on it is.

Also, you should always make sure you have proof of insurance when driving.

There are even a few circumstances that may require you to have active coverage on your car, whether you’re using it or not.

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You May Be Legally Allowed To Drive Due To a Hardship Or Restricted License

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Depending on the situation surrounding your suspension, the court hearing your case may grant a hardship or restricted license based on your personal situation.

If you are granted one of these licenses, then maintaining your car insurance is important.

Due to your suspension, and your potential classification as a high-risk driver, your insurance provider may be unwilling to continue providing coverage.

If this is the case, then you may have to apply for an insurance policy designed specifically for high-risk drivers.

Your state’s Department of Insurance can provide further guidance on providers to speak to.

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You May Have Someone Else Drive Your Car While Your License Is Suspended

Your license may be suspended, but others in your household or close to you may still be able to drive. During the time period of your suspension, others in your household or close friends may operate your vehicle.

Whenever your car is in operation, there should be insurance coverage protecting your car, the passengers inside, and anyone else on the road.

Remember that every state is different, and some states do not offer coverage to other drivers that are not listed on the policy.

Make sure to discuss any concerns about coverage to other, non-listed drivers with your insurance agent or provider.

You May Store Your Vehicle and Need To Protect It From the Unexpected

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During the time period of your suspension, you may decide to store your car someplace off-road.

While this reduces some of the risks to you and your vehicle, there is the chance that an unfortunate accident could still damage your car; even while parked.

Purchasing or maintaining comprehensive coverage on your vehicle often referred to as storage coverage, may be necessary.

Storage coverage normally protects your vehicle from damages or incidents that are not caused by a collision.

Make sure to speak to your provider if you want to place your car into storage coverage, to see which options are available to you.

You May Want To Avoid a Lapse In Coverage

Having a lapse in your insurance coverage can cause hardships later when you try to obtain coverage in the future.

Insurance providers are often hesitant to bind new coverage for a driver that has had a gap in their coverage history, even more so when there are multiple gaps or a gap in combination with other factors.

When you have a suspended license, your insurance provider may decide to cancel coverage at their discretion.

If possible, speak with your agent or provider to try and avoid having your policy canceled during this time. Having your current policy canceled may make it even harder to obtain a policy in the future.

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Choosing Coverage

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Having a suspended license is never an ideal situation, which means there are lots of variables to consider.

If you are provided an exception for driving by the court, then you need to maintain active coverage throughout your suspension.

Additionally, if there’s the chance your car could be operated by someone else during your suspension or your car could be damaged during its time off-road, then having coverage is important.

Remember that insurance providers are often concerned about gaps in insurance coverage, so maintaining your policy throughout your suspension may be a good idea.

Make sure to speak with your provider about the possibility of leaving your policy in force during this time, as some providers may cancel a policy due to a suspended license.

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