Baltimore car accident lawyers

Who is Liable if a Borrowed Car is Crashed in Maryland?

Generally, drivers who cause car accidents are liable for the damages inflicted upon other drivers. If that driver borrowed the car involved in the accident, the driver and the car’s owner might share liability.

In an accident involving a borrowed car, the driver behind the wheel at the time of the accident and the owner of the car might both be liable. In an insurance claim, the car owner’s insurance would likely be the primary insurance used to pay for damages, and the driver’s insurance would be secondary. Similarly, an injured driver might sue the car owner, the person who borrowed the car, or both. Whether the car’s owner is liable for the accident depends a lot on whether the driver had permission to borrow your vehicle.

If someone caused an accident using a borrowed vehicle, you might have claims against the driver and the owner. Contact our Maryland personal injury lawyers for help immediately. For a free case review, call Rice, Murtha & Psoras at (410) 694-7291.

Who is Liable for a Car Accident Involving a Borrowed Car in Maryland?

Liability for a car accident involving a borrowed vehicle can be tricky. On the one hand, it is appropriate to hold the driver of the borrowed vehicle liable because they were the one behind the wheel. On the other hand, an injured driver might argue that the car’s owner should never have loaned out the vehicle, and they should also be held liable. When such incidents happen, the driver and the car’s owner might be held liable for the accident.

Generally, if the driver who borrowed the car is at fault for a crash, the vehicle’s owner can be held liable too. In many cases, liability comes down to insurance. Even though the owner was not directly involved in the accident, their insurance might be used to cover the damages. If you want to pursue a lawsuit, you might sue both the driver and the vehicle owner.

The issue of permission plays a big role in these kinds of cases. People usually are not liable for accidents when their car was taken without permission or stolen. In that case, you might only take legal action against the driver who hit you, not the car’s owner. Our Maryland car accident lawyers are here to assist you and help you make sure the right person is held accountable.

Who Pays for a Car Accident Involving a Borrowed Vehicle in Maryland?

When it comes down to insurance, both the car’s owner and the driver might have insurance that covers your damages. The laws in Maryland regarding insurance and motor vehicle accidents view the driver as the agent of the car’s owner.

The vehicle owner’s insurance is usually the primary insurance involved in an accident with a borrowed car. This means that when you file a third-party insurance claim, you would do so with the car owner’s insurance first. All your damages and injuries are processed under the owner’s insurance. If any damages are not covered, the driver’s insurance would be used as secondary coverage.

For example, suppose your damages from the car accident amount to $75,000. Next, suppose the car owner’s insurance covers you only up to $60,000. You can seek the remaining $15,000 from the insurance of the driver who hit you even though they did not own the car.

This situation might be helpful in cases where the car’s owner does not have insurance. Instead of going after the car’s owner for damages, you can file a claim with the driver’s insurance. Our Maryland car accident attorneys can assist you in determining how to begin the insurance claims process and how to get the full extent of your damages covered.

Suing for an Accident Involving a Borrowed Car in Maryland

You might consider filing a lawsuit to recover damages not covered by insurance or if the insurance company denied your claims. Much like the issue of whose insurance to file a claim with, many injured drivers are not sure whom to sue; the driver or the owner of the car. In short, you can sue both, but for different reasons. Our Baltimore car accident lawyers can help you get your case started.

The driver who caused your accident and injuries can be held liable in a lawsuit for their negligence. Generally, negligence involves four critical elements: duty, breach, causation, and damages. Duty refers to the driver’s legal obligation to drive with reasonable safety under the circumstances and obey the traffic laws. The breach is whatever the driver did to violate their duty. Causation is what connects the breach to your injuries, and the breach must be the direct cause of the accident. Finally, your damages must be real and not just possibilities.

Suing the car’s owner is a bit different. Injured drivers can sometimes sue the car owner for negligent entrustment. This is often the case where the driver is known for being dangerous behind the wheel, and the vehicle owner lets them drive anyway. Depending on your unique situation, there might be several ways we can help you hold the vehicle’s owner liable in a lawsuit.

What if the Driver Borrowed the Car Without Asking in Maryland?

As mentioned above, whether or not the driver that hit you had permission to borrow the car plays a huge factor in your insurance claims and lawsuit. Often, the vehicle owner’s insurance company will not want to pay for damages caused by someone who took the car without permission. Similarly, it might be difficult to successfully sue the car’s owner if they did not give permission to the driver to take the car in the first place.

The issue of permission is not always clear-cut. We might still prove that the owner gave the driver permission to take the vehicle even if that permission was not verbal or explicitly clear. For example, if the driver frequently takes the car without asking for normal errands, and the owner knows about this, the owner has arguably given implied consent to the driver to take the vehicle.

Call Our Maryland Car Accident Attorneys for Help Now

If you were hit by a driver in a borrowed vehicle, you might have claims against the driver and the car owner. Our Annapolis car accident lawyers can help you get compensation from the parties responsible for the crash. For a free case review, call Rice, Murtha & Psoras at (410) 694-7291.