What is my liability in case of a caraccident if my ex-wife is the only driver and she insures the vehicle?

UPDATED: May 5, 2011

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What is my liability in case of a caraccident if my ex-wife is the only driver and she insures the vehicle?

Asked on May 5, 2011 under Accident Law, California


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

You say "ex-wife"--does that mean you are divorced? If you are divorced, then generally you would *not* be liable--legally, she is a "stranger" to you, no more your responsibility for actions done after the divorce than any woman would be--unless it is the case that she was driving your car. If you were the owner of the vehicle, you could be liable, as the owner of a vehicle could be liable anytime their car is an accident caused by someone they allowed to drive it.

Note that simply, as part of your divorce settlement or order, paying her car costs should not be enough to establish liability; it should have to be owned by you to make you liable.

Again, a divorce severs the legal ties, except as ordered or settled in the divorce; you are not normally liable for what happens to or is done by an ex-spouse.

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