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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a good friend who has bought a car in Atlanta, he is flying out on Friday to drive it to the east coast for shipping back to the UK.
He has just been told by the dealer he bought the car from that he can't sort out the insurance because my friend doesn't live in the states.
He has asked his insurers over here who say they can't help, any suggestions greatly appreciated
 

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I was just on the phone to RH insurance when I read this, so I thought I would ask. They cant (and probably every insurance company) insure a vehicle on foreign plates out of the country. It's either find an american to insure and drive it for you or pay out for a transporter company to pick it up
 

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ive given up hope on trying to drive in the US.. You need to have a address of residence to be able to register your plates. The plates can only be registered in the state of your address. I called Hagerty's and got the above information.
 

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All correct.

You CAN get a US company to insure you, provide you have a billing address in the USA. And that's the kicker - that means an address to which your credit card or bank account is registered. Oh, and many companies require a state-issued driver's licence.

Then you have to negotiate the problem of registering the vehicle in your name so you can actually insure it, as every DMV will want proof of your address within that state. I think Wyoming and South Dakota were the only exceptions, but that may have been tightened up on now. There is the option of having a US resident buy the car for you and then add you as a driver on the insurance policy, but a lot of companies may still refuse to insure someone without a US licence (even though the IDP is supposed to be global) or residential address. And whoever is carrying the policy is going to be liable for you, so they probably should be a pretty good mate and have no assets that the law can touch! Because the Americans use driving licences as ID cards, things have tightened up dramatically after 9/11. The days of flying out, buying a $500 clunker (ha!) and driving across the USA are sadly gone.
 

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Can you take a local driving test in US to get a local licence, as a non-resident? Or has that been clamped down on as well?
 

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As far as I know, you have to have a visa and an SSN, basically something with a US address. It's also time-consuming depending on the state. I got an appointment for my theory test with no problem but when I came to book the 'behind the wheel' test, I was told there would be a wait of at leat 4 weeks. Eventually I rang almost every DMV office in California and Needles DMV was brilliant (not often you hear that said about the DMV!) and booked me in a day later. Again, because the driving licence is effectively the national ID, it has been clamped down on.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks for your help, he's there now so will be interesting to see what he did. I know he found a local insurance guy in Atlanta who thought he could get round the problem.
 

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I wish there was a way around this, I would love to go over the pond, buy a yank tank, drive Route 66 then shop the car home with me........ but the insurance thing makes this little dream impossible.

I drove it I a hire car a few years ago which in itself was fantastic, but the real deal has got to be in an old yank.
 
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