Will the insurance company pay my claim if someone else was driving my car?

Q:

Will the insurance company pay my claim if someone else was driving my car?

A:

To give you a short answer: yes, your auto insurance policy will pay even if someone else if driving your car.

This, however, is subject to a few conditions. The most common of these is that the person driving the car must have been authorized to do so. So, if someone steals your vehicle – even if it's your spouse or child taking it without your permission – and gets into accident, it won't be covered.

Other than not being an authorized driver, you will have no auto insurance coverage if the driver is violating any of the following:

  1. The Motor Vehicle Act: if the driver is violating any part of the Motor Vehicle Act (for instance, by driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol), there is no coverage should an accident occur
  2. Purpose: if the driver is using the vehicle for a purpose other than the purpose stated on the insurance policy, there is no coverage. This usually comes up when a driver has a vehicle insured under the pleasure use rate class but is actually using it for business purposes. If the insurer can prove that this was the case at the time of the accident, there would be no coverage
  3. Intentional Act of Violence: if the driver intentionally caused the accident (perhaps in a fit of road rage), there is no coverage
  4. Illegal Purpose: if the driver is using the car for an illegal purpose (such as racing or evading police pursuit), then there is no coverage should an accident occur

There are other things that may invalidate your auto insurance but these are the main ones. Your insurance would still pay even though someone else is driving the vehicle provided no other conditions were breached.

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View all questions from Jacques Wong.

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About the Author: (Director of Education at PNC Learning)

Jacques grew up around the insurance industry and began actively participating in 2013. Since then, he has gotten a Level 2 license, won Insurance Council of BC awards in 2015 and 2020 for academic excellence in the insurance licensing courses. He educates insurance professionals through PNC Learning and as a Thought Leader at ReFrame Insurance.

In his day job as an insurance broker, he helps businesses with creative risk management solutions and strategic advice when it comes to insurance.

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