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Legal Blog

Accident in a Borrowed Car: Who’s Liable?

Recovering compensation is essential if you are injured in a car accident that was caused by someone else. Unfortunately, traffic accidents are often complex, and it can be difficult to get the financial damages you need.

Many accidents victims are hit by drivers who were operating a car that belonged to someone else. How will your case be affected by a negligent person who caused your accident in a borrowed car? Even though your case might be more complex, you still have options to recover the help you need. It’s important to contact an experienced Houston car accident lawyer right away if you or a loved one have been hurt through no fault of your own.

Do not hesitate to contact The Krist Law Firm. We can help you understand every step of the legal process and secure the result you deserve. Call (281) 283-8500 or contact us online to set up a free, initial consultation.

Did The Driver Have Permission To Borrow The Car?

Texas law requires that every car owner have at least $30,000 in liability coverage for their vehicle. This is meant to help the innocent victims who are injured by a negligent action caused by the person driving the car.

Fortunately, this coverage applies to most cases where a person has permission to borrow the car and then goes on to cause a collision. Sometimes it can be difficult to define “permission”, but legally it can be broken down into:

  • Written permission – The least common, this is when a person puts in writing that someone else is permitted to use their car. This writing can be on paper, email, or even social media post.
  • Verbal permission – People frequently lend their car out by using the spoken word. While not on paper, this is still completely legitimate.
  • Implied permission – This is when a person’s actions imply that they are lending their car to someone else. For example, a parent who gives their car keys to their child is implying that the child has permission to drive the car.

A driver without permission to operate someone else’s car can be facing criminal charges if they cause an accident with the stolen vehicle. While this may let the owner’s insurance off the hook for liability, it does create a question of who will pay for the harm sustained in the wreck.

If you are a victim in this case, then you may be able to file an uninsured motorist claim with your own insurance provider. It’s important to have a knowledgeable lawyer represent you with this claim since your own insurance company will seek to pay out as little as possible.

The Borrowed Car That Hit You Does Not Have Insurance

Even if the other driver was legally in possession of the car, they may be violating the law by using a vehicle that is not properly insured. This can become very serious if you or a loved one are hurt due to the other driver’s negligence.

The other party may run away from the scene, or they may simply not have the resources to help you recover from your injuries. Hiring a skilled Texas personal injury lawyer is very important in this situation. Our firm has worked on many uninsured car accident cases, and we understand that each one is unique. Your property damage and medical bills can be costly, and you cannot wait around for financial help.

Your lawyer may be able to help you pursue one or several options for recovery if the other party is uninsured. One option is to seek damages from your own insurance policy.

An uninsured motorist claim can be challenging since your insurer may fight to pay out as little as possible. Building a strong claim for damages is important, and your lawyer must be experienced in negotiating with insurance companies.

Another option may be to file a lawsuit against the other driver or the owner of the other car. Demonstrating how their negligence caused your harm can help you recover damages from them. However, your lawyer may only find this to be a viable option if the other party is found to have sufficient assets to pay you compensation.

The Other Driver Borrowed The Car For Work Purposes

It’s important to understand that Texas law treats work vehicles differently when it comes to liability in an accident. You might not be able to recover from the owner’s insurance if the borrower was using the car for work-related purposes.

In these cases, liability is held by the driver who caused the accident while on the job. Every case is unique, and your lawyer will have to assess the details of your accident in order to determine how to recover damages.

A collision can happen with a borrowed car that was being used for:

  • Ride-share work – Rideshare companies will generally have an insurance policy that comes into effect if one of their drivers causes an accident while on the job. Your lawyer can make sure that this covers your harm if the other driver hit you in a car that they borrowed in order to make money.
  • Making deliveries – Some delivery drivers work directly for the company that made the product, but some work for a third-party intermediary. Either way, the driver’s employer may have insurance purchased for your accident.

Contact The Krist Law Firm Today

You have the right to recover damages after being hurt in a car accident caused by someone else. The presence of a borrowed car can make your case more complex. But a knowledgeable Texas injury lawyer will understand how to secure compensation even if you are hit by someone who borrowed car. Given the complexity of your case, and Texas’ strict statute of limitations, it’s important that you contact your lawyer without delay.

We understand how stressful your life can become after a terrible accident. People in the Houston area are constantly being injured through no fault of their own. Contact us today to discuss your options for recovery. Call (281) 283-8500 to set up a free, no-risk consultation.