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Where Does the Car Insurance Follow?

Written by Michele Wilmonen. Posted in Ask An Insurance Question Last Updated: 06/30/2017

Q: I have just one question, if I have a automobile liability policy does it cover any car or truck that is registered or operated by me?

A: Yes, your car insurance would cover you in any non-owned vehicle. A non-owned vehicle is a vehicle that you are not the owner of at the time.

For example, when you rent a car your car insurance will cover any accident you are in with that vehicle. There are time limits though and most insurance companies will only provide coverage on a non-owned vehicle for up to 30 days. This is an unknown risk to them and they extend that coverage as a courtesy to you, it is not something they are required to do.

Now, there is a clause. It’s car insurance, of course there is a clause. If you are driving someone else’s vehicle (not a rental) and you get into an accident, their car insurance is the primary coverage and yours is the secondary coverage. So your friend is on the hook if you get into an accident with their car.

Car insurance policies are designed to cover the vehicle, not the driver. Insurance companies create most of their rates for physical damage coverage by using the claims and safety history of the vehicle that is on the car insurance policy. If you are driving a different vehicle than what is on the policy then the car insurance company is not charging the correct rate for the coverage.

If you need car insurance for any vehicle you drive contact your car insurance agent about purchasing a non-owners car insurance.

 

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Michele Wilmonen

Michele’s first introduction to insurance was working for a major insurance company as a file clerk and a mailroom supervisor in a regional office. She learned insurance directly from underwriters and claims adjusters from questions and also watching them do their job. Since then, she’s earned a number of insurance certifications from the Insurance Institute of America and also a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Idaho. She blogs at Car Insurance Guidebook.

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