Typically, when your car is involved in a car accident, you were the one driving. However, there are some instances where it is actually the fault of someone else driving your car. If this person was negligent in their driving that caused an accident, it might actually come back to you, instead of making the driver the person who was liable. Here are some common situations where the owner of the vehicle is the one liable, instead of the driver.
An Employee Drove the Vehicle
One of the more common instances where you are still responsible for the accident is if the car was used by an employee. For example, if you run a delivery business, and one of your drivers ran a stop sign and that resulted in an accident, you will be liable for the damages. Your employee was negligent, but because it is a company car and they were performing business operations, it becomes your liability.
The exception is if a company car was used by an employee after work hours and without permission, such as taking the company car on the weekend for a personal errand.
Your Child Drove the Car
Another way you could be liable for an accident caused by another driver is if you let one of your children drive your car. There are many states where parents are automatically responsible for any negligent driving of a parent's car driven by the child.
When you let your child drive your car, you are trusting that they will be safe and responsible on the road. By trusting them, you take responsibility for any accidents that might occur. Another way you are responsible is by signing their driver's license application while they are a minor. When you sign this application, you state that you take responsibility for their driving habits.
You Allowed Permission for Someone to Drive Your Car
If you live in certain states, you might be taking extra responsibility for their driving habits when someone else drives your car. Of course, this only applies if you give them permission. You should be very careful of who you let drive your car. By giving them permission, you are making a verbal agreement that you trust their competency and take responsibility. You may be liable for accidents they cause due to negligence.
You can also be responsible if that person was unfit to drive, but you let them drive anyway. Some examples of being unfit include being intoxicated, not having a driver's license, being inexperienced, or being an elderly driver.
If you're having to pay up for someone else's recklessness, figure out how you can battle through the process by consulting resources like Edward J. Achrem & Associates, Ltd.