What happens with car insurance if a friend borrows my car?

What if a friend borrows your car?

There may come a time when a good friend wishes to borrow your car. Maybe they’re a great friend and they’re a good, safe driver who’s responsible behind wheel. So, without too much hesitation, you decide to agree – your friend just needs a set of wheels for a little bit, and you trust them. You are, however, a little bit curious about the auto insurance situation. Will a friend who borrows your car be covered, and how? We’ll explain.

What happens if a friend borrows my car?

Typically, car insurance will follow the vehicle itself. And that means that your friend would be covered by your auto insurance if they’re borrowing your car. (For that reason, you’ll want to be careful when deciding who’s allowed to borrow your car!)

If your friend only needs to use your car from time to time, your friend likely is covered by your insurance. However, insurance rates aren’t only about your car – they’re also about the primary driver of the vehicle. So, should your friend start driving your car a lot or more than you do, you may want to add them to your policy – that can help you avoid headaches down the, err, road – pun intended.

At any rate, be careful who you lend your car to! You want to lend your vehicle to people who will treat it as if it were their own – ideally, even better than their own.

What if you borrow your friend’s car?

But then there’s the reverse situation – what if you borrow a car from your friend? Well, hopefully, all goes well and you return the car to your friend without a scratch on it. That would probably be best for all involved!

Unfortunately, sometimes things don’t go according to your plans. You might have every intention of returning the vehicle in good condition, and maybe even with a full tank of gas, but what if that plan is rudely thrown off-course?

So here’s a situation – what if you borrow a friend’s car, but you get into an accident? What happens? Well, their insurance would most likely kick in first. (Basically, it’s the reverse of what happened in the previous hypothetical we described where a friend borrowed your car.) So, it might be an awkward conversation with your friend, but yes – it’s likely that they’re going to see their insurance step up first. But – yes, there’s a but – if they don’t have high limits of insurance and the accident exhausts them, your insurance could be up next. Just something to keep in mind before you roll down the street in the borrowed vehicle.

So, in summary, if your friend borrows your car, your car insurance likely follows the car. (So, think hard before handing over your keys to someone!) And to reverse the situation, if you borrow a friend’s car and then get into an accident, their insurance will likely be up first to cover it. If their limits are exhausted, your insurance might step in next. So be prepared for that and maybe have a conversation before any cars are borrowed and driven away.

Speaking of insurance, you can get car insurance quotes by filling out our online form, giving us a call, or messaging us. Our insurance professionals would be happy to help with your insurance needs.