Who pays if a friend crashes your car?
Your best friend comes into town and is staying with you! They need to run to the store, so you toss them your keys and they take off in your vehicle. Then the phone rings and there has been an accident in your car. First question…Is everyone ok? Once it is determined that there are no injuries the next step is to contact the insurance company, but which insurance company will be covering the accident?
The general rule of thumb is that insurance follows the vehicle. This means that the owner of the vehicle will have to absorb the cost and ramifications of the accident. If the driver of your car is at fault, then you will be responsible for the deductible. Also, if there are any damages paid out on your vehicle and/or the other vehicle, there is a chance that it could impact your future renewal rates.
People are often surprised that they are penalized by an at fault accident and that it is not paid for by the insurance carrier of their friend or family member who was driving.
The big question is, does the driver that was at fault face any penalties since it was not his/her car or insurance?
In the event the damages, either medical or property, exceed the limits of the vehicle insurance then the insurance carrier of the driver may act as secondary. Or if the driver information is reported, there is a possibility of a surcharge on the policy if his/her insurance carrier runs an accident report and discovers the accident. However, in the majority of situations, the risk and responsibility is placed on the vehicle owner.
It is also important that you contact your insurance agent to find out if your auto insurance policy will even cover non-rated drivers, as some policies do not extend coverage unless the drivers are named on the policy.
These are serious factors to think about before tossing your keys to a friend!
Ask your agent!
If you have questions on your auto insurance, feel free to contact the Luci Temple Agency at 512-913-9637. We are happy to help!