In Florida, as in any other state, a driver’s license is a vital document that grants you the authority to drive a vehicle. But there’s a little confusion when it comes to driver’s licenses and vehicle ownership.
Do you need a driver’s license to a buy a car in Florida? Such question may appear to be a paradox similar to:
What comes first, the chicken or the egg?
Luckily, things aren’t as daunting as they seem to be. You certainly don’t need a driver’s license to buy a car. Yet you won’t be able to drive it out of the parking lot unless you are licensed.
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When you visit a dealership, sales agents usually ask potential clients whether they are licensed. You’ll need to be frank and tell them about your intentions to carry on with the negotiation.
As opposed to dealers, private sellers don’t mind your driver’s license status. They would rather focus on your ability to pay the asking price.
The ordeal may start when attempting to register your vehicle at your local Tax Collector’s agency.
Below you’ll find other questions that better explain the relationship between holding a driver’s license and vehicle ownership.
Can you finance a car without a license in FL?
The answer is no. Dealerships require buyers to have a valid driver’s license to finance a new vehicle.
A driver’s license has a twofold purpose:
It serves as a proof of identity
- Dealers need to ensure you are not requesting a car loan on behalf of a third party.
- Dealers also use your details to pull out credit reports when it’s time to evaluate your risk and qualifications.
It indicates you can register your car with the DMV
- Like in any state, vehicle registrations are mandatory in FL.
- To process your registration, you’ll need a driver’s license among other requirements.
Can you get license plates without a valid driver’s license in FL?
When it comes to license plates, you’ll first need to register your vehicle with your local DMV agency.
The name on the title also needs to match the name that appears on the registration. By matching both names, they prevent people from registering a car in someone else’s name.
If you pay cash for a vehicle, you could put someone else’s name on the title. This could allow the new owner to register the car with the DMV.
This practice is quite risky. The third party ends up being the legal owner of the vehicle and could have enough power to act upon their own discretion.
A safer solution is to have a shared ownership of the vehicle with someone you firmly trust. That person could be a spouse, sibling, or any other relative who may work in your best interest.
Can you test-drive a vehicle without a driver’s license?
If you don’t have a driver’s license, you cannot operate, nor test-drive any motor vehicle.
It’s illegal to drive a car if you are not licensed. Hence, bring a licensed friend or relative with you to be allowed to test-drive your dream car.
3 reasons why you can buy a car without a driver’s license
There are always situations in which you could buy a car without holding a driver’s license. And these reasons are fairly acceptable.
- You hired a caregiver: If you have a caregiver, you’ll need support from them to get you around. Some of them do not own a vehicle and may need to use yours.
- You buy a car for a third party: You clearly don’t need to be licensed to buy a car for someone you love, such as a relative or any significant other.
- You buy a car for an employee: You may own a business and need to buy a car for your staff. You will be required to finance the vehicle in your name.
All in all…
You can buy a car without holding a driver’s license. But you won’t be able to do much about it afterwards. Florida residents are required to register their vehicles at the nearest Tax Collector’s agency.
Before purchasing a new car, make sure you are fully-aware of your obligations.
If you already have a FL driver’s license, but haven’t registered your vehicle yet, visit our portal to process your registration online.
No longer will you need to arrange in-person visits when you can take care of things from the comfort of your home.