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Important information

Target audience

AudienceFrench citizens, Statutory refugees, Beneficiaries of subsidiary protection, Stateless people


Be in possession of a residence permit or a receipt
Have a driving licence

Where is it?

Insure a car

Updated on il y a 9 mois

What is it?

Once you have bought a car, you must insure it. The insurance covers the material damage (damaged car...) and / or physical damage (injuries...) that your vehicle may cause.

Insurance is compulsory for the following vehicles:

  • cars (passenger, utility or even cars you can drive without a licence)
  • 2 or 3 wheels (motorcycles or scooters) and quads or “mini-motorcycles”

You must have insurance as soon as your vehicle is roadworthy (so even if it doesn't really run, or very rarely!)

You take big risks if you do not insure your car!
- it is an offense punishable by a fine of up to €3,750, and which can withdraw your license and/or your car
- if you create an accident, you may have to compensate (pay) the victim very dearly!

How to do it?

You will have to choose between three main types of insurance depending on your needs and your financial means:

  • third-party insurance: it allows you to compensate (reimburse) all the damage that your car may cause to another person. On the other hand, you the driver, and your car, will not be covered in the event of a problem.
  • enhanced third-party insurance: this includes the guarantees of third-party insurance, and certain specific subjects that you choose when signing the contract. For example: protection against theft, fire, etc.
  • all-risk insurance: this is the most comprehensive insurance. It takes care of all the damage you can cause to yourself and to others.
Third-party insurance is the minimum insurance you must have to drive!

You can “purchase” (subscribe) your insurance contract with one of the following organisations:

  • General insurance agent
  • Broker
  • Bank
  • Insurance company

You can contact several agents or organizations to be able to compare their proposals

Unfortunately, the insurance has the right to refuse to insure you, for example if you have had a lot of accidents before. In this case of "refusal of insurance", you can contact the Central Pricing Office (Bureau central de tarification or BCT).

Here are the main steps to take out the contract:

  • Indicate the type of insurance you wish to have
  • Answer the insurer's questions precisely to estimate the price of your contract (for example: do you use your car to go to work? are you the only regular driver of the vehicle? have you ever had a major accident...? )
  • Study the insurer's proposal. It includes the following elements: the draft contract, an information sheet on prices and guarantees, and a detailed information notice.
Above all, do not lie in the information you give to your insurer! This could void your insurance contract, or not cover you if you have a problem.
Check carefully in the contract proposal that everything is clear to you. In particular the limits of the guarantee / the cases where you will not be covered, and the effective date of the contract. If you have any doubt, ask your insurer for an explanation.

If you decide to accept the insurer's proposal:

  • Give the insurer the signed contract. You will receive a certificate proving the existence of the contract, and an insurance certificate (also called “green butterfly” to display on your car)
  • Also ask for an uncompleted copy of the “amicable report”: this is the document to be completed if you have an accident, with the other person involved
Many insurers allow you to cancel the contract within 14 days of subscription, if you change your mind (and have not yet had to use your insurance). Please note, this is not an obligation.

What happens next?

Your contract will generally renew automatically every year, as long as you do not decide to cancel (terminate) it. In order for you to know on what precise date your contract ends, the insurer has the duty to remind you every year.

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