IfI “rent” my car to a friend and he let someone else drive it and they got into an accident, who is liable to me?

UPDATED: Dec 26, 2011

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UPDATED: Dec 26, 2011Fact Checked

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IfI “rent” my car to a friend and he let someone else drive it and they got into an accident, who is liable to me?

My friend and I have a written agreement which he signed. It says that he, as the renter, is responsible for all damage and that he would be the only driver. He pays me every month he uses the car on a month-to-month basis. The issue is that I did not have collision coverage on the car and the accident was 100% the fault of the driver, a friend of my friend. I am now faced with a $17K loan that needs to be paid off.

Asked on December 26, 2011 under Bankruptcy Law, New Jersey


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

from what you have written, your friend and the driver of the vehicle would be responsible to you for the damage that happened to your car under the rental situation that you have written about. The problem is that you have no collision coverage for the vehicle and possibly your friend and the driver of the vehicle who caused the damage may not have adequate funds to have the car repaired.

Worse yet, with the car damaged and possibly in no condition to be operated, your friend may not pay you the monthly rental agreed to.

In the future, it is very important to have all necessary insurance coverage on the vehicle you own.

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