How insurance covers policyholders driving someone else’s vehicle

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The insured hired a van, but his coverage only covers cars specifically described in the policy. (Photo: PHOTOBUAY / Shutterstock)

Every claim is different and some insurance policies can be difficult to interpret for unique situations. Interpretation of FC&S expert coverage, the recognized authority on the interpretation and analysis of insurance coverage for the P&C industry, makes it easy to find credible answers to your complex coverage questions. Analysis provided by our FC&S experts.

Editor’s Note: This week’s question examines what could happen if an accident were to occur with an uninsured driver and an insured driving someone else’s car.

Question: My client operates parking garages. One of the garages used by condominium residents was damaged by flooding earlier this month, and it will take a few months to repair the garage. Fortunately, no cars were damaged by the flooding.

My client rented an Enterprise van to transport residents from the garage to their condo.

Enterprise does not provide coverage for uninsured motorists. My client’s auto policy for the rented auto show includes coverage for uninsured motorists. However, it is the symbol 7; therefore, this only applies to programmed autos.

I’m curious how this coverage would apply if the automobile is owned by a family member or friend or the automobile of an employer.

– Subscriber from Pennsylvania

Analysis: Auto insurance is mandatory in all states, and most people are familiar with it. However, there are many nuances. Each policy contains provisions indicating who can drive the vehicle other than the insured and how coverage is provided. The policies also describe what happens in the event of an accident with an uninsured driver and how the police react in this situation. It can get very confusing when the two situations occur simultaneously: an accident occurs with an uninsured driver and an insured driving someone else’s car.

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