Does your friend's auto insurance policy cover you if you borrow his car?
Occasionally, you may need to borrow your friend's car to run an errand, go to work or complete some other task. When you do this, do you know if you're covered by your neighbor's auto insurance policy?
In most states, the answer to whether you're covered or not depends on how much you're using the vehicle and what you're using it for.
As always, auto policies may differ by state, so be sure to check your state's policy to see how you're covered.
For states that don't require you to use your own auto insurance policy, regardless of who's at fault for an accident, here are things to consider before you borrow a friend's car.
How Often Do You Use the Car?
If you only borrow your friend's car once a month, most likely your friend's policy will cover you when you drive the vehicle. An auto policy will define who it covers, which you can find in the definitions sections. In this instance, look for the definition of an "insured person" to see who's covered.
For example, an "insured person" may include "any person with respect to an accident arising out of that person's use of a covered auto with the permission of you or a relative." Under this definition, if someone else gives you permission to drive his vehicle, you're covered by his insurance policy — as long as your other actions with the vehicle also fall within policy allowances.
How Long Do You Borrow the Car?
Another consideration is how long you're borrowing your friend's car. If you use the car for a day or two, most likely that's not considered regular and frequent use. However, if you borrow your friend's car for several weeks, you may not be covered by his auto policy. In cases like this, you most likely would be considered a regular user, which means you should be added to your friend's insurance policy if you use his vehicle in this manner.
Why Are You Using the Car?
Finally, consider why you're using your friend's car. If you're using the vehicle to conduct business, like delivering pizza or hauling equipment for a landscaping business, you'll need to make sure the vehicle is covered under a commercial auto or business insurance policy. Personal auto policies typically don't cover anyone for conducting business with their vehicles.
Auto policies have long lists of actions and circumstances that aren't covered, so make sure you check to see what's covered before you drive your friend's vehicle.
If you have a Progressive policy and you have any questions about what's covered and what's not covered, you can contact us online at any time or at 1-800-PROGRESSIVE (1-800-776-4737) 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
The information in this blog may vary based on your particular state or situation. Always refer to your insurance policy for your specific coverages.