It’s a common scenario… your child lets his or her roommate run an errand with their car. It’s likely a decision your son or daughter makes without considering the potential consequences. But, even under the best scenarios, accidents happen and can’t always be avoided. As a parent, you’re probably thinking: Are we covered? The answer isn’t always straight forward and can vary based on several factors.
State Policies and Laws
Policies and laws vary by state. Therefore, it is essential that you review your insurance needs and coverages with your Farm Bureau agent.
Your Type of Auto Coverage
If your child’s roommate is at fault in the accident, your auto liability coverage could help pay for the other vehicle’s damage and the medical bills for the other driver. However, the liability coverage would not cover damages to your vehicle or the medical bills for the driver of your car.
If your insurance policy includes collision coverage, it may help cover the repairs to your vehicle but you’ll still be responsible for paying the policy deductible.
The answer is not always as simple as illustrated above. Your specific auto policy may include restrictions and exclusions. Be sure to review your auto policy with your agent before you or your child allows someone to borrow your vehicle. It’s also a good idea to talk with your child about the risks of letting a friend borrow his or her car.
Exceeding Limits on Your Primary Coverage
When your child’s friend borrowed the car it seemed pretty simple, but accidents can create complexity. If the accident causes injuries and damage surpassing the coverage limits set by your insurance policy, it’s possible that the friend’s auto policy could be used as secondary coverage to help pay for the costs in excess of your insurance policy. But if the friend doesn’t own a car and therefore doesn’t have a policy of his or her own, you may be held responsible for the damages not covered by your insurance policy.
For those who have access to a vehicle they don’t own or normally drive, some companies offer non-owner car insurance. At Farm Bureau Financial Services, we offer “Named Non-Owner” coverage which extends liability protection to certain types of non-owned vehicles.
Sometimes it’s a split second decision to let a friend borrow the car, but it’s essential to review your insurance policy first. Your local Farm Bureau agent, can review your policy and answer questions before you toss your keys to your friend or your child’s roommate takes the car for a spin.