If someone else drives your car and gets in an accident, are you responsible? This is a question every driver must ask themselves before they let another person take their car. In some cases, the answer may be yes, and in others, it may not be so clear-cut.
For example, if you’re lending your vehicle to a friend for just one day and that person causes damages or injuries, you will most likely still have to pay for them. However, suppose it was a family member borrowing your car. In that case, the situation becomes more complicated because there’s the possibility of insurance covering the costs of any damages or injuries caused by an accident while driving your vehicle.
The process isn’t always simple, and in some cases, it can lead to legal proceedings, so it’s best to consult with Idaho Car Accident Lawyers who know the ins and outs of insurance policies and how lawsuits are handled in your state.
What to do if Someone Else Crashes Your Car?
If you lent your car and the person who borrowed it caused an accident, you might want to file a claim with their insurance policy, depending on how severe the damages are. However, suppose they were not carrying any form of coverage for accidents while driving other vehicles.
In that case, the chances are good that your own insurance company will pay out as long as there’s enough insurance on the vehicle involved in the accident. In this case, you’ll have to pay a deductible, but it’s better than being sued for damages and medical costs.
If someone else crashed your car without any coverage or with low liability limits, then the chances are good that they will be found at fault for causing the accident because they were the one driving.
Prove You Gave Someone Permission to Drive Your Car
The main question about lending your vehicle and who is responsible for what happens while they’re driving the car has to do with proof. In some cases, you may have:
- A signed document from the person borrowing your car stating that you know they lack insurance or other means of covering damages or injuries if an accident occurs.
- Have a text message
- E-mail from them asking to borrow the car
- Suppose they can prove that you knew about their insurance status and permitted them anyway.
In that case, the chances are good that your policy will pay for any damages because of lack of coverage while driving someone else’s vehicle.
What if You Don’t Have Proof?
If you don’t have proof of letting someone borrow your car or knowing they were uninsured, then there’s a good chance that the court will side with them because it appears to be their word against yours. You may also find yourself in legal proceedings if you signed documentation saying they would only drive the vehicle for personal use and not while carrying passengers or engaging in any commercial activity.
In this case, you may be able to establish that the person was operating your car as a business and not merely borrowing it for their use. Still, again if there isn’t proof, courts will likely side with them because they can claim you let them take control of your vehicle under pretenses.
Make sure to have a statement from their insurance company saying that they are covered for driving under these circumstances before you let them take it out on the roads, so there’s no question about whether or not they had coverage while behind the wheel.