What Should You Do If Hit While Driving Someone Else’s Car?

Have you ever borrowed your parent’s car to go pick up groceries or get to an appointment? What happens if another vehicle hits you while you’re driving their car, and you’re not on their policy? Trying to figure out how to get your damages and injuries covered in this scenario may seem confusing, and if you don’t carry your own car insurance, finding adequate coverage can be challenging.

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Insurance Usually Follows the Vehicle

It’s important to understand that the first loss from an auto crash is the vehicle itself. This is what our coverage policies base themselves on and make replacing or repairing our cars easier. You might think that you don’t qualify for insurance benefits since you’re not an authorized driver on your grandmother’s policy, but that’s not the case.

Since car insurance focuses on the vehicle, coverage extends to you as well if you had permission to drive it. So, if you get struck on the way to pick up grandma’s prescription, you can file for coverage under her personal injury protection policy that’s required by the state.

It’s important to understand that if you regularly drive this car, your grandmother needs to put you on her insurance. One-off occasions to the store or work are one thing, but trying to save money by not adding you onto her policy opens you both up to possible claim denials. Consider speaking with an experienced car accident attorney about your situation to understand what your rights are after this type of accident.

Holding the Other Driver Liable for Hitting the Car You Borrowed

After an accident involving another car that struck you while driving a borrowed car, it’s vital to know whose insurance company will cover your damages. Just like any other collision liability situation, your grandmother will likely file for the loss and repair of her vehicle against the other party’s car insurance. If your injury losses exceed the provided PIP coverage limits on her policy, you’ll have to pursue those costs against that other driver’s insurance as well.

Dealing With an Uninsured or Underinsured Driver

If you were in an accident where the other party did not have insurance or their policy was insufficient after PIP benefits are exhausted, things become more complicated. You will have only a few options to pursue compensation for expenses like:

  • Medical costs
  • Lost work and/or wages
  • Property damage
  • Transportation costs related to medical care
  • Pain and suffering
  • Future care

To better understand what your options are under the law for compensation of your accident-related injuries and costs, speaking with an experienced New York personal injury attorney is vital.

Use Your Own Car Insurance Policy for the Difference

Your coverage may pay for some or part of your injury claim. When this occurs, your policy will work as a secondary-coverage. This is something all of the involved insurance companies and the courts might decide. In our original example of driving a friend’s vehicle for the weekend, there’s still a chance that the driver’s insurance could end up paying some of the claim.

Your Borrowed Vehicle’s Insurance May Cover All of Your Claim

Another scenario may involve your borrowed vehicle’s insurance compensating you, then you can go after the other driver’s policy. There’s no guarantee that this will happen in your situation. A car injury lawyer can help determine what options you can take to recover your damages

File a Personal Injury Suit Against the Other Driver

If there are no policies to cover the remaining losses you suffered, filing a personal injury suit against the liable driver may be your only option. This matter requires a legal team with extensive practice in this area of law to ensure you end up with the compensation you need to maximize your recovery.

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You Can Count On Our Los Angeles Car Accident Attorneys

Every year, Los Angeles drivers borrow a friend or family member’s car and find themselves injured in a car accident. Before taking a spin around town, make sure you find out about the insurance coverage with the vehicle. If you drive it regularly, it’s time to put yourself on the policy, so a gap in coverage is minimal. Don’t leave yourself exposed to debilitating injuries with inadequate insurance to support your recovery.

If you’ve been in a serious car crash and find yourself struggling to get compensated, trust a law firm that will put its best car accident lawyers in Los Angeles on your case. At The Barnes Firm, we’ve dedicated ourselves to helping injured drivers hurt by the negligence of others on the road. Our law firm has earned recognition by the Million Dollar Advocates Forum for the large settlements we’ve won at trial in car accident injury cases. Learn more about how our seasoned car accident legal team can help you by contacting us today.

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