What Happens to Car Insurance Liability If your Friend Crashes your Car
Car insurance is a policy which covers you, your car and third-party liabilities, in case of an accident involving your vehicle. As per the terms and conditions defined in the car insurance policy, you will be covered in case of an accident. However, the most common confusion among people is that what will happen to your motor insurance coverage in case your car gets damaged in an accident when someone else other than you is driving the car.
Who is Covered When Driving your Car?
It can be confusing to understand who is covered by your motor insurance to drive your vehicle. Although, car insurance policies can vary from insurer to insurer, but as a general rule of thumb, almost all drivers driving your vehicle will be covered by your insurer.
However, if there is any person explicitly mentioned in the “excluded drivers” list in your car insurance, such persons won’t be covered when driving your car.
So, you can obviously lend your car to your friends or family members who don’t live with you, as ‘permissive use’ generally applies in these cases. ‘Permissive use’ implies that in case you grant someone permission to drive your vehicle, they will be covered under your car insurance policy.
Factors that Influence this Liability Coverage
Whether your third party or comprehensive insurance policy will cover the damage or liability caused when your friend crashes your car will be subject to a number of factors, which are:
1. The person driving your car should fall under the age group for drivers covered by your insurance policy.
2. The person driving your car should have a valid license because if he/she does not have a driving license, or has a cancelled or suspended license, your insurance may not cover you.
3. The person should not be driving under the influence. In case your friend was under the influence of alcohol or drugs at the time of the accident, your insurance will not provide coverage.
How Will your Car Insurance Policy Cover the Damage?
If you have car insurance, and you get involved in an accident causing either third-party property damage or bodily injury to another driver, your insurance company will cover the cost of damages according to the terms and conditions of your insurance policy. Provided the policy includes collision and liability coverage, injuries to others and damage to the car itself will be covered.
But, in case a friend borrows your car and gets involved in an accident while driving your car, is it their insurance policy or yours that cover the damage and injuries? The answer to this question will depend upon the severity of the accident.
Coverage offered by motor insurance policy will be according to the following circumstances: -
1. If the accident is a minor one, resulting in nominal damage to your car, then in most cases, provided all the conditions are met, your policy will provide coverage for the accident. Your insurance policy will cover you, your car, and anyone else who drives your car (except for cases if someone uses your car without your consent).
2. If your friend gets involved in an accident which results in serious bodily injury to others and extensive property damage, your car insurance policy will only cover the property damage caused by your vehicle and not the third-party injuries. The ‘at fault driver cover’ is only liable to cover the cost of bodily injuries to themselves and other passengers in the car.
So, if a friend crashes your car, your car insurance policy may provide coverage depending on its terms. However, there may be circumstances wherein you may end up footing the bill for the damage yourself, or hold your friend liable for the money.
Therefore, before you consider loaning someone your car, it would be a wise idea to check their driver’s license status and also your terms and conditions with respect to your car insurance coverage. For better information on your car policy coverage, you can contact your car insurance company online or on their customer care number.
**To understand exactly about the policy coverage, exclusions etc read the Policy Wordings carefully.**