When an accident occurs, one main concern is as to who is liable for the damages and compensation. Fortunately, in most accidents, damages are covered by one of the involved driver’s insurance companies. This makes financial recovery more likely.
What if the person who was driving one of the vehicles in the accident was not the owner of the car?
This type of scenario can complicate the process of filing a claim. However, there are certain protocols that help to resolve this issue when it occurs. One should understand that when it comes to accidents of this nature is that Car Insurance is insurance on the car itself, rather than the driver. Thus, as long as you have Car Insurance, your vehicle is likely to be covered if it is involved in an accident while someone else is driving.
Similarly, if the accident was determined to be the fault of the other driver, their insurance will be held responsible for damages.
What if the person driving your vehicle also has insurance?
When the driver of your vehicle has their own insurance policy, then that coverage will act secondarily to yours. This means that your insurance will pay for the damages and other expenses up to your coverage amount. Also, if there is any leftover bill, the driver’s insurance will cover it.
What are the exceptions to these rules?
There are certain exceptions here. These can result in you being held liable or your insurance refusing to pay for the damages to your car. One of the exceptions is that if the person driving your car was specifically excluded from your coverage.
There are times when people will exclude a driver from their coverage because they have a poor driving record. This would cause their insurance to be more expensive. In case you allow the excluded person to drive your car and they get into an accident, your insurance will not be obligated to pay for any of the resulting damages.
Another prominent exception to these rules involves the state of the driver at the time of the accident. When you allow a person to drive your car who is under the influence of drugs or alcohol, or they do not have a valid drivers’ license, you will most likely be held liable.
What if someone takes your car without your permission?
When someone takes your car without your permission, you might still be considered responsible for paying damages since it is difficult to prove whether permission was granted or not.
There are a few exceptions to this rule. These are if your car was stolen, used by a friend or family member. Whether they are insured or not, your car insurance will usually provide coverage and pay for the damages.
How to protect yourself from financial responsibility?
Every car accident is unique. So, every car accident case is unique as well. In order to prepare for unforeseen circumstances, you must understand your insurance policy well. Accordingly, you can follow the rules it sets out for you.
In case you get into a car accident, the best course of action is to contact a car accident injury attorney. Get in touch with a professional personal injury attorney who is a specialized type of attorney. They are the right people who can help victims of car accidents recover their financial losses.
What steps can you take if someone took your car without your permission and caused accident?
In the state of Florida, if your car was taken from your possession without your consent, you cannot be held liable for any damages that were incurred. Thus, you need to prove that you did not give permission.
Here are some basic steps that you can take in such a scenario:
Inform the police
Remember that your first course of action, when involved in this type of situation, is to file a police report. When you have the fact that your car was stolen on official documentation, it will be easier to back up your claim. If your car was actually stolen by a stranger, this will be easier to prove than having a friend who took your car without asking. You must prove you did not give the driver permission. This does not mean any type of vocal consent. If you handed someone your keys, it is assumed they had your consent to drive your car.
In case you did give the driver permission, you will be responsible for damages until you reach the end of your car insurance policy. If damages exceed your policy, the car insurance policy of the driver responsible for the collision itself will kick in. The best way to ensure that your policy is not liable for damages and that your rates don’t go up, is to get it on paper that whoever was behind the wheel of your car did not have your permission.
Inform your insurance company
You must notify your car insurance company. You must see what your insurance company can do to support your claim.
Before assuming, you can get out of your responsibilities to cover damages. This way you can make sure to get a thorough understanding of your car insurance policy. You may have already legally given this person permission to drive your car. Make sure you get your facts.
Usually, vehicle owners are not liable for damages caused by their stolen vehicles merely as a consequence of owning their cars or even leaving the keys in the ignition. However, a vehicle owner may be held liable if it can be established that the owner had proper knowledge that a specific person had used their vehicle in the past without their permission and failed to take steps to stop them.
Usually, car owners are liable for personal injury resulting caused only by persons using the vehicle under the permission of the owner. Since the owner of a stolen vehicle has not given the thief consent to use the vehicle, the owner cannot be held liable for any accidents and injuries the thief causes while operating the vehicle.