Most of us do not think much of picking up the keys of our friends’ or relatives’ automobiles. In the same way, we may not think twice before generously handing over the keys to our own cars. Maybe it is a good idea to have a look at the implications as to what would happen should there be an accident. There is a possibility that our friendship may not stand up to the strains an accident with a friend’s car can cause.
Insurance Implications of Lending Your Car to Occasional Drivers
We should first look at what would happen if we borrowed our car to someone of a chance happening. Most standard automobile insurance policies would not have a problem with covering this driver for this occasional borrowing of the insured vehicle. Quite a few policies would have a condition stating that anyone who drives your car must be at least 25 year old and has a valid driving license. This way, insurers can have some sort of control over who can drive the insured vehicle. They consider young drivers to be high risk and therefore they exclude them for even a short few hours.
Some cheaper or non-standard vehicle insurance policies may exclude any other driver unless except they are listed on the policy. There is a high chance you know this condition before you bought the policy. It is a way of bringing the premiums down and many people voluntarily take this option. So, first you should familiarize the terms of conditions on your policy about occasional drivers.
One point to keep in mind is that usually auto insurers do not consider people living with you to be occasional drivers in this sense. They like to know who else live with you over the age of driving. They would take a note of them even though they are not listed on the policy. It would make sense to include them on your policy to clarify the position. Normally, it would cost nothing or not much to include drivers over the age of 25 with good driving records to be included on your policy.
Borrowing Someone Else’s Automobile and Insurance
We now know that insurance usually go with the car from above context. When your friend lends you his vehicle he should have insured it for your use as well. To make sure you can ask if that is the case and you would be insured while driving the auto in question. Normally owners are supposed to insure their cars properly and control its use.
You cannot insure someone else’s car although there may be exceptions in the case of partners living in the same house. It may not matter who owns the car and either partner may be able to insure it. As an outsider you can only buy insurance for others’ cars in two ways. You may be able to extend your liabilities insurance with your own car to include accidents you had with others’ vehicles.
Secondly, you may be able to buy non owners auto insurance to cover liabilities arising from driving cars belong to others. Non-owner vehicle insurance normally only covers liabilities. In both arrangements we are only talking about excess liabilities. The first call of third party claim payments would still be the insurance of the vehicle’s owner. Should he/she not have insurance, have insufficient coverage or damages go well beyond the limits of owner’s policy your liability insurance arrangements kicks in.
In some cases, people may choose to sue the driver separately. This would be the case if they consider you negligent in the accident. Then you would feel lucky that you have own liability coverage. It is always a smart decision to buy sufficient amount of liabilities coverage especially in this age of litigations and ambulance chasing lawyers.