For many, loaning out your vehicle to a friend, family member, neighbor or roommate is not that big of a deal. They might not have their own vehicle or it might be getting repaired and they just need to run to the supermarket, bank or other quick errand. What could go wrong?
Well, car accidents happen all the time, regardless of who is behind the wheel of your car. Knowing this, it is also important to know that even if the driver has their own insurance, it is your insurance coverage that will come into play should they end up in an accident.
You Are Liable When Loaning Out Your Vehicle
That’s right, in the event the person you lent your vehicle to gets in a car accident, you will be liable. Your insurance policy is meant to cover you and anyone you give permission to use your car. If you let your roommate use it to grab groceries and they end up in an accident, your insurance policy will be the one covering them.
They might have their own, better insurance policy, but yours would still be the primary one. This means your policy will be used first to cover any damages resulting from the accident. You may end up having to meet a deductible on your policy and even end up with an increase in your insurance premium.
In New Jersey, car insurance follows a “no-fault” system, which means every vehicle is required to register to have personal injury protection (PIP) insurance. This pays for medical costs if you or anyone covered ends up hurt in a car accident, regardless of responsibility for the accident.
If the person you let use your car does not have car insurance and is not in the same residence as someone else with PIP insurance, you will be held liable for the damages. Again, it is important to know when and what you will be liable for and weigh that into your decision to let another use your vehicle.
New Jersey Car Accident Lawyers Can Help
When it comes to liability and insurance coverage for vehicles in New Jersey, the system can be quite difficult to navigate, especially following an accident. That is why it is in your best interest to consult and experienced lawyer with questions of if you or a loved one has been in a car accident.
In New Jersey, the legal team at Blume Forte Fried Zerres & Molinari has the experience to help with your motor vehicle accident claims. They will make sure you receive compensation for any and all damages suffered because of the incident.
Fill out the form to contact them today and begin discussing your case.
The articles on this blog are for informative purposes only and are no substitute for legal advice or an attorney-client relationship. If you are seeking legal advice, please contact our law firm directly.