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Who Is Liable If My Car Is Involved in an Accident When Someone Else Is Driving?

On Behalf of | Jan 13, 2021 | Vehicle Accidents

Sometimes, determining fault after a car accident can be complicated. It becomes even trickier to determine whose insurance policy should cover the damages if someone else is behind the wheel of your vehicle.

Is It Legal to Drive a Borrowed Car?

In short, yes. If someone needs to borrow your car every now and then, that shouldn’t be an issue. However, if a friend or relative is regularly driving your car, you’ll be better off adding them to your insurance policy.

What If Someone Drove My Car Without Permission?

The vehicle’s owner cannot be held liable if their car was stolen and then involved in a collision. You can only be liable if you gave the driver permission to use the vehicle. Contact the police as soon as possible and notify your insurance company if someone takes your vehicle without permission.

Who’s Liable Financially?

When someone else is driving your car, any tickets they get will go on their record, but car insurance works differently. Regardless of who’s driving, the policy covers the car. This means your insurance will still pay for any repairs if your vehicle is involved in an accident while someone else was at the wheel. If the damages from the collision exceed your policy’s limit, the insurance of the person who was driving your car can act as a secondary level of coverage. Things can get more complex under the following circumstances:

  • The person who borrowed your car was at fault
  • They do not have auto insurance

  • The damages to the other parties in the accident (including car repairs, medical bills, and lost wages) exceed your policy’s limit

Ultimately, you want to prevent any issues that will cost you money. The best way to do that is by not letting anyone borrow your car unless you trust them.

The car accident lawyers at Smith Shanklin Sosa have years of experience helping residents in the Baton Rouge area. After an auto accident, we can offer legal advice and pursue compensation if you were injured. When you call our office, you’re guaranteed to speak directly to one of our knowledgeable attorneys. Schedule a free consultation by calling 225-424-6094 or contacting us online.