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Driving someone elses vehicle and got in car accident

by Harry

My Daughter was asked by her freind to drive home from a lunch in her car, which she agreed to do. On the way she hit a car stopped at a light from behind.

The persons car was not damaged and they left the scene with out exchanging any information. My daughters friend doesn't want to go to her insurance company in fear the rates will be increased. Both girls are 18 and only driving about a year.

What should my daughter do to protect herself from legal problems and should she pay the damage repairs on her freinds car?


Hello Harry,

This is a very difficult situation. You have a friendship, possibly other parents, and the possibility of getting suit later on.

The problem as you outlined is that “insurance follows the car”, so their insurance company will have to pay the damage your daughter caused. If they make a claim, it is likely that rates go up, not because of the damage per se, but the fact that their daughter loaned a vehicle increases the amount of risk they are paying for.

Your insurance company will not likely pay, because your policy is probably not triggered until the insurance covering the car pays first.

So this will put you on this dilemma. Can they sue her legally for this? Yes, but by doing that, their own insurance company will have to cover your daughter. Remember, insurance follows the car, and the “omnibus clause” of the policy will kick in (this clause covers any one driving the vehicle as long the driver is a permissive driver, and not excluded from the policy).

If this is the cause, then then their insurance company must “defend” your daughter and pay for the damages. Something they don’t want to do. Since there is coverage on that policy, their insurance company will probably have to step in.

Now, this is only a factual scenario and without looking at the policies it is very hard to say (so do not rely on this, talk to your lawyer).

She caused the damage, so if they come after your daughter you can 1. Pay the damage (and get a "release of all claims so your payment is the end of that), or file a claim.

Good Luck
Driving someone elses vehicle
Good Luck,

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