What Is a Cover Note in Driving?

Buying a brand new car is great, but you’ll need to secure yourself with car insurance to ensure you get the most out of your ride. 

You’ve probably heard the term cover note, but what is a cover note in driving

If you want to learn more about a topic that regularly drives under the radar, get ready to find the answers to all your questions in this short-and-sweet article.

Let’s dive in! 

What Is a Cover Note in Driving?

A cover note is a document insurance companies issue as proof that you have insurance in place. Namely, it is a temporary document provided as motor insurance before the final documents are ready to be sent and, after that, becomes void. The insurance cover note is given to drivers who haven’t decided on a policy yet.

Since it is a temporary replacement for an insurance certificate, the following information will be found on it:

  • Name and address of the driver
  • Brand and type of the car, together with the registration
  • Level of cover
  • Type of cover
  • Date of expiration for the cover
  • Policy numbers
  • Other special conditions and terms

Depending on the insurer, the cover note usually lasts 15 to 30 days, but in case the official certificate isn’t processed yet, it can be extended to 60 days. During that time, the note will remain the policyholder’s proof that coverage has been obtained. 











Although insurers may impose some limitations until they make any final decisions on the involved risks with the policy, the cover note offers the same coverage as the insurance policy.

You can use the insurance as proof of cover whenever you are stopped by the police and asked for evidence of coverage or in case you get into an accident. Usually, this might happen if your new policy cannot be found on the Motor Insurance Database (MID).

When to Obtain a Cover Note?

While waiting for your complete insurance papers to be processed, you need to obtain a cover note. Additionally, if you modify your insurance policy, such as changing or adding a vehicle, proof of cover might also be required. This temporary certificate will allow you to drive with the same insurance coverage you’d have with the complete one.

Many insurers will send you a cover note just after your policy begins, allowing you to start travelling right away. But some of them prefer to deliver your Certificate of Insurance once your policy starts rather than issuing a temporary cover note. 

There are two ways of obtaining the cover note:

  • You can clear up with the insurance company if they will reimburse the costs of the case, so you’ll know if you want to engage a lawyer and pursue the case, or
  • You can obtain it from the insurance company by your attorney so that he/she can provide the necessary papers and present your case better.

You might be interested: How Much Does a Car Cost in Canada?

What Happens If My Insurance Certificate Doesn’t Come?

The certificate of insurance usually arrives before the expiration of the cover note. If your certificate has not arrived before the usual 30-day period expires, the first thing to do is contact your insurance provider so they can tell you the reason for the delay. Most likely, they will extend the validation if they are unable to send you the certificate.

Furthermore, there are cases where the personal information provided might be incorrect, such as the address or contact details, so the policy didn’t go through appropriately. Therefore, you should make sure there is no gap in your cover note and the dates on it coincide. 









Cover notes are there to help you when you need to prove that you are insured, so it’s better for them to be kept in a conspicuous place if you ever need them until the full documentation arrives.


So, now you know that with this document, you won’t have to worry about your car insurance application being rejected because you can still legally drive until you get your certificate. Although, due to this digital era, cover notes are not very common today, insurance companies still provide them whenever needed.

Now, when someone asks you “What is a cover note in driving?”, you’ll have the knowledge to go on an educational tangent and help others understand how to protect themselves in case a legal issue arises. 


Can I drive with a cover note?

Yes, you can drive with a cover note. You will be issued a cover note from your insurance company, which is a temporary document that shows you can legally drive. It is valid for a limited period of 15-30 days but can be extended to 60 days.

What is a cover note for driving?

A cover note for driving is a document issued before the full insurance certificate is received, so the driver could be able to provide proof of vehicle insurance. It also provides the same level of coverage as the complete insurance policy.


Mila is an English literature student and a devoted animal's rights advocate. Despite her love for the written word, she's a keen observer of the everyday world and an excellent researcher with a bright and fresh perspective. When she's not doing research, you're most likely to find her out for a walk with her dog or binge-watching a TV show.

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