Do You Insure the Car or the Driver?

Sometimes it can be confusing what you are really insuring, the vehicle or people? That is why these questions are often asked. It may sound like a tongue twister but actually a very good point to understand how it works. We may need to look at specific circumstances to clarify whom and what is included.

A blanket question like that cannot be answered without breaking it down. The answer changes depending on the specific coverage, its conditions, the state it is issued in and circumstances involving a particular incident. You need to answer this question in relation to a particular component of a policy and check it for special conditions and exclusions before you can give a conclusive answer.

There are a few options available to you when you are arranging certain level of protection for everyone and everything involved that give you flexibility. However, you need to understand what does it include and what doesn’t it?

Does Insurance Follow the Car or Driver?

We cannot generalize and say that it always tracks one, the other or both although insurance go with the car not the driver in most cases.

Usually, the wording, state you live in and circumstances determine if it would accompany your automobile or you. There are circumstances and types that go with the motorists and there are covers that insure a vehicle where it is and when it is operated by others who are permitted on the schedule. Let’s have a look at these options in detail.

A typical full coverage automobile insurance has several components. Some of those components are for the motorists, some for the car and the others cover the car while used by the permissible drivers. However, liability isn’t interested in your own vehicle but cover the insured drivers for any damages and injuries they may cause to third parties. So, it is possible that a policy insures only the drivers or the car and both together.

Does Liability Car Insurance Follow the Driver?

A liability policy isn’t for the protection of own automobile. It is purchased to compensate third parties against any damages and injuries you cause to others. Standard liability may cover the insured driver riding someone else’s vehicle including rentals. However, it is hard to talk about standard anymore because there are so many variations, restrictions and special conditions. Yet, it is fair to say that the above statement stands. Usually, it provides secondary vehicle insurance in case you are using someone else’s auto.

By the way, it doesn’t entirely abandon the vehicle since it covers occasional drivers riding it as long as they are not excluded with a special clause. And yet, a liability policy doesn’t actually provide any coverage for the vehicle but offer third party protection for the accidents involving the auto.

What Is Comprehensive Coverage for?

Comprehensive portion of a full coverage policy insures the car against many damages including fire, flood, vandalism, theft and falling objects. So, it protects the vehicle even it was stationary. In other words, it is for the vehicle and drivers don’t come into picture in most claims since the damages aren’t usually sustained when the vehicle was in motion.

Does Collision Follow the Vehicle?

It protects the auto against losses sustained during a crash. So, it is fair to say that it is for the car. But does it cover the vehicle regardless of who was behind the wheel? Most crashes happen when it was in motion and therefore, who was in control of it comes into context. A standard collision covers the vehicle while it was operated by the listed drivers and occasional ones who was permitted by the owner.

However, there are driver exclusions. A traffic accident losses sustained by the vehicle may not be compensated if someone who was explicitly excluded by the carrier used it. Sometimes, these exclusions may be by name and other times by age group. For example, most sports car policies exclude motorists of certain age like under 21 or 25.

Comprehensive and Collision follow the car and it won’t track the driver since it won’t protect another vehicle. The only coverage that goes with the driver is liability and it will only provide limited defence in case the third party vehicle isn’t sufficiently insured by the owner.

Even it was bought to insure the vehicle like collision coverage, it is hard to generalize and say that it is there at all times. There may be exclusions and special conditions to be aware of. It is best to check the documents or ask the agent for each situation, as there are so many moving parts to be fully clear about the positions you are in.