You would have at some point given your car or have your car driven by a friend or family member without giving much thought to the implications of a collision. You might even think that it is inconsequential who drives your car as long as the person has a license.
However, it would help if you gave thought to the possible consequences of allowing someone else to drive your vehicle. Often, insurance policyholders have issues with their insurer when someone driving their vehicle gets in a collision.
Therefore, you need to be aware and considerate of the implications of giving your vehicle to another person. Granted, there are situations where it's almost inevitable that another person drives your car. However, you must know the legal implications in the case of a collision and plan accordingly.
Who Is Covered in My Insurance?
Most car owners who have insurance do not think of what happens when someone else drives their vehicle. The usual assumption is that everyone with a driving license must have their insurance. Not only is that assumption wrong, but it is also presumptuous.
Your auto insurance is a legal contract between you and your insurance provider. The insurance protects you in the event of an accident, theft, or loss. Your car insurance policy covers you and your family members who you list in your insurance. The policy does not protect you if you use your vehicle for non-personal purposes like deliveries, Uber, etc.
Fortunately, some insurance providers can extend your coverage for the commercial use of your car at an additional cost. Car insurance varies by state, and different policy providers have their requirements.
Below are some of the auto insurance coverage for a collision available:
- Bodily Injuries Liability: The coverage takes care of medical bills for injuries or death caused by the auto accident.
- Property Damage Liability: This coverage provides reimbursement for damages to vehicles or properties in the event of a car crash.
- Personal Injury Protection: This coverage covers medical treatment expenses, loss of wages, and jobs after an auto accident.
Your insurance will not cover all auto accidents, injuries, and damages. For example, if there is no coverage for anyone driving your car and is unlisted in your policy.
However, if another person drives your car in a fault state and an accident occurs, the fault is considered. Therefore if the person driving your car is not at fault in an auto accident, your insurance provider will not pay for damages.
What Is Permissive and Non-Permissive Use?
Below, we explained what permissive and non-permissive use means:
Permissive use in insurance policies is when a policyholder gives his express permission to another to drive his vehicle. The person can give the permission tactically or overtly. Permissive use also applies to members of the policy holder's household.
Sometimes, other people can borrow your car without your permission. For example, if your car gets stolen or a friend or family uses your car without your consent. Another scenario is in the event of an emergency, and you're unable to give your permission, which may be due to incapacitation.
Also, even when you do not give your permission and the person driving your car is uninsured, you're more likely to pay for damages if an accident occurs. Insurance applies to cars and not to drivers. Essentially, your insurance covers damages after an auto accident irrespective of who was driving the vehicle.
What Happens if Someone Gets Into an Accident While Driving My Car?
Different situations call for different measures following an accident. If the person driving your vehicle gets into an auto accident, you may call their insurance policyholder if they hold an active policy.
However, if the person does not hold insurance, your premium and deductibles will be negatively impacted. The chances are that you may be charged with further damages that you might have to pay out of pocket. Your coverage determines which damages you will cover out of pocket.
Before looking at what coverage you or the person who was driving your car during an auto accident, there are steps you have to take:
- People injured need to be given medical attention and their injuries noted.
- If in an at-fault state like Alabama, then the fault must be established, affecting the claims and how they're filed for.
- Check the extent to which your coverage can go in taking care of damages and injuries.
- Find out if you need to sue the driver of your vehicle for non-permissive use.
Mike Bell Injury Lawyers Are Who You Need!
Auto accidents are traumatizing and costly, financially and injury-wise. But getting an experienced auto accident attorney makes the challenge surmountable. We can help you with this at Mike Bell Accident Injury Law. Schedule a free case review today.