Most people would have no problem letting a good friend or relative borrow their car. After all, you trust them to take good care of it and drive responsibly. However, car accidents can happen to anyone at any time. When a friend or family member is involved in an accident while driving your vehicle, it is important to know your legal rights and responsibilities under Florida law.
Determining Whose Insurance Company Handles Paying Damages
When someone borrows your car and an accident happens on the road, it is natural to wonder whose insurance company will pay for the damages.
Contrary to popular belief, the auto insurance you purchase is not tied to you. It follows your vehicle.
In general, anyone who lives in your house is also covered by your insurance policy when they are driving your vehicle. Most insurances companies require that anyone of driving age be listed on your policy.
In many cases, friends who borrow your vehicle are also covered under the permissive use provision in your insurance policy.
When an accident occurs, your insurance would kick in to cover any damages and injuries suffered in the crash. The driver’s insurance policy would typically provide secondary coverage. If your friend or family member was not at-fault for the accident, then the at-fault driver’s insurance policy would be responsible for damages to your vehicle and any injuries suffered.
Are There Any Exceptions to This Rule?
Although auto insurance generally follows the vehicle, there are some notable exceptions to this rule:
Excluded people in your household. If you have excluded a family member from receiving coverage under your insurance policy, then the insurance company may refuse to pay for damages after an accident.
Stolen vehicle. If your vehicle was stolen and an accident occurs, then you would not be responsible for paying the other party’s vehicle or medical damages. For the most part, your insurance company would cover the costs for any damage to your vehicle.
Family members or friends who drive your car without permission. If a family member or friend drives your car without permission and is involved in an accident, then your insurance company would cover any costs that exceed what his or her insurance company was willing to pay.
Before accepting a settlement, it is important to speak to an experienced and skilled car accident attorney in Tallahassee. Your attorney will review the details of the accident and determine which insurance provider is responsible for paying damages.
Contact a Car Accident Attorney in Tallahassee for a Free Consultation
Your Tallahassee car accident lawyers know that car accidents can be confusing. They are often even more confusing after someone who borrows your car is involved in an accident. Attorney Eric Milles will work quickly and efficiently to clear up any confusion and help you out during this difficult time. To learn more, contact Milles Law today at (855) 553-3310 or fill out our confidential contact form for a free consultation.