What happens if you were driving someone else’s car when a collision occurred depends on a few key factors. In general, you should have coverage under the vehicle’s auto insurance policy, but the following circumstances will play a role:
- Whether you had permission to drive the vehicle
- Whether the vehicle owner had car insurance
- Your level of auto coverage
- The severity of the damages and fault of the other driver
Navigating Florida’s no-fault car insurance laws can be confusing enough after an accident in your own vehicle. Our firm can help you sort out your options if you were behind the wheel of someone else’s car.
Do I have Insurance Coverage if I wasn’t Driving My Car During a Car Accident?
If you have an accident while driving someone else’s car, Florida laws say that you should have coverage under the vehicle owner’s insurance. Under state statutes, personal auto insurance follows the vehicle first, and the driver second.
This scenario also falls under the Florida legal doctrine of “dangerous instrumentality”, which holds the car’s owner responsible for damages their vehicle caused. A vehicle owner could face liability for damages when their vehicle is involved in a collision that leads to another driver’s injuries, even if you were driving. This generally only applies if they gave you permission to drive their car, however.
This means that, as long as the vehicle’s owner gave you permission to drive the car and their policy does not specifically exclude you, their insurance should cover your accident.
How will State Car Insurance Laws Impact My Case?
If you have car insurance for your own vehicle, your personal injury protection (PIP) coverage should also cover your accident. However, these coverages will only apply if the vehicle owner did not have insurance at the time of the accident.
By law, Florida vehicle owners must carry a minimum of $10,000 in PIP coverage. This coverage pays for medical expenses, lost wages, and associated costs for:
- The vehicle owner
- Members of their household
- Passengers who do not own their own vehicle
- Drivers who borrow the vehicle with the owner’s permission
Florida law also requires vehicle owners to carry a minimum of $10,000 property damage liability (PDL) insurance to cover damages that may result from an accident. This coverage also extends to other drivers who use the vehicle with permission.
The Florida statutory insurance requirements will likely change again, however, as new laws take effect and new coverage limits apply. An accident lawyer in Fort Lauderdale from our firm can help you interpret these complex insurance laws.
For a free legal consultation 800-747-3733
What if I Drove the Car Without Permission?
In most cases, if you drive someone else’s car without permission and have an accident, your own car insurance policy would cover any resulting damage and injuries you suffer. If you do not carry insurance because you do not own your own car, it will be much more difficult to recover compensation.
If you were driving someone else’s car without permission at the time of your accident, contact us immediately so we can begin working on your case.
Does it Matter who was at Fault for the Accident?
Florida is a no-fault state—meaning that each person involved in the crash has coverage under their own PIP insurance, no matter who was to blame. However, some severe injuries allow you to step outside the no-fault laws and pursue damages from the other driver or their insurance company.
This means that, if the accident occurred because of another driver’s negligence, that person’s insurance may cover severe or permanent injuries you suffered, as well as damages like:
- Lost wages
- Future medical bills
- Pain and suffering
If you were not driving your car during a car accident, our car accident lawyer in Tampa at the Law Firm of Anidjar & Levine can help you understand how state laws may affect your compensation. Call us at (954) 525-0050 today for a free consultation.
Comparative Fault in a Collision Case
Even if you were partially to blame for the car crash, we can still recover partial damages on your behalf under the state’s comparative fault rules.
Under these rules, per Florida Statutes §768.81, state law reduces the number of damages you can recover based on your degree of fault. If you were 20 percent to blame for the wreck, for example, we can help you recover up to 80 percent of your total damages.
Our personal injury attorneys can help you understand if the serious injury threshold applies in your case.
Get Answers From An Experienced Attorney.SPEAK TO AN ATTORNEY NOW
How can a Florida Car Accident Lawyer Help Me?
As Florida’s insurance laws make this a no-fault state, for many accidents, each driver’s own insurance policy covers their injuries and damages. However, if another driver caused the accident—and if your injuries exceed the serious injury threshold in terms of severity—you may have grounds for filing a legal claim to recover additional compensation.
We are ready to help you, starting with a complimentary case evaluation. Our intake team will review the details of your case during this free call and suggest your next steps forward with us representing you. Based on what we learn about your case, we could help you:
- Apply for coverage under the vehicle owner’s insurance policy
- Seek coverage from your insurer
- File a claim or lawsuit against the at-fault driver
To pursue an injury accident claim against another driver, your injuries must be significant, life-threatening, or permanent. Alternatively, if you lost a digit, limb, or organ, or if you lost the use of some part of your body, you likely have legal standing to pursue additional damages. Our team can work to help you prove the severity of your injuries and the number of damages you qualify to recover.
Call for Legal Help with Your Car Accident Case
If you sustained crash-related injuries—even if you were driving someone else’s vehicle—you still need appropriate medical treatment. If you are struggling to get your injuries and lost wages covered, the car accident lawyers at the Law Firm of Anidjar & Levine can help.
Contact us for a no-cost case consultation today. We can explain your legal options and help you figure out the best way to get coverage for your damages. You can reach us any time at (954) 525-0050 to talk to our team about working with a Florida car accident lawyer.
We want to put our knowledge, experience, and resources to work for you.SPEAK TO AN ATTORNEY NOW