LEGAL GUIDE
Written by attorney Ronald Shane Smith | Jul 12, 2012

Insurance Issues: An Accident in a Borrowed Car

The question of liability is often confusing in car accidents. Whether there were multiple cars involved, dangerous road conditions, or defective vehicle parts, there can many times be more than one party who is responsible for the collision. There is one situation in which liability is even more confusing: when you let someone borrow or drive your car, and an accident happens. Are you liable? Is insurance an issue? Who pays for the damages?

If you are involved in a wreck like this, contact an Atlanta insurance lawyer at the Law Offices of Shane Smith immediately to determine liability. Chances are, there may be multiple insurance companies responsible for footing the bill for any damages or injuries incurred in the wreck. Your liability, collision and comprehensive insurance coverage, as well as the insurance of the driver whom you let borrow your car, all may be applicable. To determine accurately who is liable, though, your lawyer will need to know insurance coverage information for your car, you and the other driver, as well as details about the collision.

Is insurance an issue?

In Georgia, liability insurance follows the car. So, whether you’re driving or not, your insurance still should provide coverage for damage done in an accident. Current liability minimum requirements in Georgia are as follows, and, in the case of a borrowed car, may still apply:

  • $25,000 toward injury or death of one person in one accident;
  • $50,000 toward injury or death of two people in one accident; and
  • $25,000 toward injury and damage done to other drivers, passengers or vehicles involved.

Other types of insurance coverage, such as comprehensive and collision, also will cover the other driver, if he or she is proved to be a “permissive user" -- someone who has been given your express permission to drive the vehicle. Insurance companies typically will consider a spouse, family member, child, or friend a permissive user. Permission to drive a vehicle can be stated directly or implied, and often, the situations surrounding the accident will help determine this. If, for example, you were incapacitated and unable to drive, it would be implied that you gave permission to the other person to operate your vehicle.

The insurance of the permissive user may follow him or her as well. Depending on the details of his or her plan, liability, comprehensive, collision and other types of insurance coverage may still cover them when driving other vehicles, such as borrowed cars or rental cars.

Getting Help from an Atlanta Insurance Lawyer

Determining who is responsible and liable for damages done in wrecks that involved borrowed cars and permissive users can be very confusing. Let an experienced Atlanta insurance lawyer help. An attorney will be able to assess your case, define liability and ensure the insurance companies pay you and your loved ones due compensation.

If you or a loved one has been in a car accident while driving a borrowed vehicle, there may an insurance issue. Call 1-770-487-8999, 1-770-HURT-999, or 1-404-513-5415 now to begin discussing your case with an Atlanta insurance lawyer at the Law Offices of Shane Smith today.

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