Loaning someone your car might seem like a good deed, but it could end up causing more trouble than it is worth in the long run. The driver could end up getting a ticket or even worse, in a serious accident. Each situation has different implications, and it makes sense to start with the first: when someone you lend your car to gets a ticket while driving.
What if Someone Gets a Ticket While Driving My Car?
The golden rule with tickets and accidents is that traffic violations are the driver’s responsibility and auto insurance claims follow the car’s owner. So if your friend, family member, or work associate borrowed your car and got a speeding ticket, that person will be responsible for paying the fine and points and dealing with any other consequences (jail time, loss of license for repeat violations).
The person who gets pulled over may have to tell the law enforcement officer that the car is borrowed, and the officer will probably want to know why that person is driving the car. The officer might also run the plates and attempt to contact the owner. Your insurance should not go up if that driver is issued a ticket. Read over your policy and look for any updates: they should contact you if there is a rate increase. Remember that each state has its own auto insurance laws, so it pays to be familiar with how they work.
What if the Driver Wrecks My Car?
If you’re letting someone who is a named driver on your policy (like your child) borrow your car, your auto policy should cover them in case of an accident. When that driver has their own insurance or is uninsured, you will need to consult your policy to see if you are responsible. In general, your provider is the primary source for damages when another driver gets into an accident in your car; your liability insurance covers injuries and damages to other drivers and collision insurance pays to repair vehicle damage. This is how the coverage usually works when the other driver is licensed and does not use your car regularly. If the damages exceed your policy’s coverage limits, the other driver’s insurance could be used as secondary coverage.
If someone else caused the crash, that other party might have the financial responsibility for the crash. Again, the specifics all depend on your policy and state laws, so read both carefully. Do not lend your vehicle out to just anyone, because some drivers do not prioritize safety and might end up speeding and even drinking and driving behind your wheel. In the worst-case scenario, you could be held responsible for injuries and damages suffered by other motorists if your driver had previous traffic violations or was driving under the influence.
A Freehold Traffic Ticket Lawyer from Ellis Law, P.C. Can Explain Your Options After You Receive a Violation
No one ever wants to receive a traffic ticket, but an experienced Freehold traffic ticket lawyer may be able to help you get the charges reduced or dropped. To learn more, contact the respected attorneys at Ellis Law, P.C. We offer free consultations, and will fight to protect your rights. Call our Freehold, New Jersey offices at 732-702-6103 or fill out our online form today. We serve clients throughout Freehold, East Brunswick, Toms River, Middletown, Jersey City, Neptune, Hudson County, Union County, Essex County, Monmouth County, Marlboro, and Ocean County, as well as Brooklyn and New York City.