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Should I keep my insurance while lending my car?

Berkeley, CA |

I will be out of the country for 6 months and would like my friend to borrow my car. She is a licensed driver and stay at home mom. I called my insurance company and they said adding her to my policy would be no extra cost to me.

However she told me that since she and her husband already own a car, it would just cost $20 for them to add the car to their insurance policy and I could just cancel my policy while I am out of country. But she is not on the title and I own the car. So is she right? What should I do?

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Attorney answers 5

Best Answer

I agree with Mr. Gold. Much simpler to keep your policy and add friend as a listed insured/driver. Insurance is linked to the car registration and plates and VIN for that car. Changing it can cause all kinds of problems if there is a lapse in coverage, including your drivers license and registration getting screwed up and the possibility of fines. Also, while the insurance may cover personal injury to the driver and the other driver in an accident, you may need to be an owner or lienholder on a car to have an "insureable interest" on the collision portion of the policy covering damage to the car if you have it.

Long story short, if your insurance carrier will add friend as an additional insured for no extra money, it's a no brainer. The only possible problem could be if your friend is a bad driver or has an accident with your car where she's at fault or gets a ticket, it may impact your rates, but usually only if you let her drive it again after the accident or keep her on the policy.

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Thank you! Excellent information.


Keep your insurance if you can afford it.

If you'd like to discuss, please feel free to call. Jeff Gold Gold, Benes, LLP 1854 Bellmore Ave Bellmore, NY 11710 Telephone -516.512.6333 Email -


Absolutely keep your insurance on your vehicle. If your friend causes an accident, you will be named in the lawsuit as the owner of the vehicle. In that case, you would want your carrier to provide you with your own attorney to defend you.

I am licensed in California only and my answers on Avvo assume California law. The above answer is for general information only and is based on the information you posted. Every case is fact dependent, so to get a thorough analysis of your situation, you will need to consult face to face with an attorney licensed to practice in the jurisdiction where the incident took place. Do not conclusively rely on any information posted online when deciding what to do about your case. No attorney-client relationship shall be created through the use reading of this response on Avvo. You should never delay seeking legal advice, disregard legal advice, or commence or discontinue any legal action because of information in this response.


Word of advice....bump up your limits to protect yourself. An umbrella policy would be prudent.

Only 29% Contingency Fee! Phone: 215-510-6755


You would be crazy to cancel your insurance. Do not do it, on the contrary, raise the maximum Uninsured/underinsured and raise the limit of your coverage. I live in Berkeley and I see these type of case all the time. If anything happens to your friend, she will be sued, you will be sued and I hope you have a large policy big enough to cover your house. Especially if you live in the Berkeley Hills. Best of luck.

This answer is provided by Manuel A. Juarez, Esq., El Abogado de Accidentes de Autos de California: 510-206-4492. El Abogado de Accidentes de Autos provides answers of a general context. These answers are not intended to form an attorney client relationship. El abogado de Accidentes de Autos y Lesiones Personales is licensed only in California. This information is good only in California and it is not to be taken as legal advice on car accidents, personal injury, divorce, bankruptcy or in any other type of situation. Esta respuesta es del Abogado de Accidentes de Autos y Lesiones Personales de Acidentes de carros, Manuel A. Juárez, 510-206-4492. Abogado Hispano de Accidentes, Divorcios, Abogado Latino de Accidentes, y Abogado de Acidentes de Oakland, Hayward, San Francisco, y California. Estas respuesta son solo para información general y no consisten en consejo legal sobre divorcios, mantención de esposas, mantención de hijos o bancarrotas. Las respuestas son comentarios legales que no forman una relación de abogado y cliente. Manuel Juarez, Esq., esta licenciado solo en el Estado de California.

Jack Richard Lebowitz

Jack Richard Lebowitz


Good suggestion about raising uninsured/underinsured. There are so many gotchas about car insurance and personal injury you don't think about when you get a car insurance policy, or, like here, try to do a favor and good deed for a friend!

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