Does Car Insurance Cover Someone Else Driving My Car?

surfer-gbd369c209_1920Have you ever wondered if your car insurance would cover an accident if someone else was driving your car? It’s a common question, and the quick answer is…..maybe. There are a lot of reasons why it would not be covered, but there are also many instances where it would be covered too. We’ll answer some common questions about borrowing a friends car, or lending your car to a friend. Rancho Cal Insurance Services wants you to be protected with your car insurance and we want you to understand your auto insurance coverage so that you can make the best decisions.

Insurance companies are not all the same, so we do recommend that you call your insurance agent to determine the type of coverage on your car insurance policy. We will explain some general insurance information that you can use as a guideline. For specific answers about your own car insurance policy, call your insurance agent.

What is Coverage For Permissive Users?

Many, but not all, car insurance policies allow for permissive users. This allows coverage for an unlisted person, with your consent, to drive your car for for a one-time errand or an emergency situation. However, this permissive use coverage generally does NOT extend to someone living in your home or someone using the vehicle routinely. It also does not extend to anyone that regularly or routinely borrows your car. We recommend that anyone who will be borrowing your car routinely or regularly should be listed as a driver on your car insurance policy. Additionally, you will need to list all household members on your policy and then choose whether to add them as drivers or exclude them from coverage.  Household residents and family members living with you do not have automatic coverage on your car insurance policy, you must either add them to your policy or exclude them from your policy. An excluded driver on your policy would never have any coverage extended to them because they are excluded. Some car insurance policies do not allow permissive users at all. Check with your insurance agent to find out what policy coverages you have.

What If the Driver Has Their Own Insurance?

If you let someone drive your car that is not a listed driver on your auto insurance policy, but they have their own car insurance, the permissive user guidelines mentioned above would still apply. The fact that they have their own policy, does not change how they are viewed by your insurance company.

Whose Insurance Will Pay to Fix My Car?

If your car is in an accident with a permissive driver that has their own car insurance policy, it will still be your car insurance policy that provides coverage for your car, per your policy limits & coverages. The permissive driver’s car insurance may also be involved, secondary to yours, for some types of coverage. However, their auto insurance policy would not cover damage to your vehicle.

What About My Nanny or Caregiver?

Typically your nanny or your caregiver will have regular access & use of your car. As such, they should be added as a driver to your car insurance policy.

Can I Borrow My Friends Car?

The answer to this question will depend on your friend’s car insurance policy. Some policies do not allow permissive users, so they should ask their insurance agent. Your car insurance policy will not cover damage to your friend’s vehicle if an accident occurs.

Rancho Cal Insurance Services has been helping California residents with their auto insurance for many years. We want you to be covered when an accident occurs. We recommend adding a driver to your policy if they will be routinely using your car or if they will be borrowing it for any length of time. Also, anyone residing in your home needs to be either an added driver or an excluded driver on your car insurance policy. When in doubt, add the driver to your policy. It’s the only way to insure that coverage will extend to them.