Is it Really Worth it to Loan out Your Car?
Your best friend has transportation issues. You decide to be nice and loan out your car. Nobody likes to hear that nice guys finish last. Unfortunately, you may find yourself in exactly that predicament. Is it really worth it to allow someone else to borrow your motor vehicle?
There are many reasons that automobile owners make the decision to loan out their cars. It might be a matter of convenience. Perhaps someone needs a ride, and you do not have the time to provide it. Maybe your own license was suspended, and you see no point in just letting your car sit in the driveway. After all, what could be the harm?
Can You Loan Out Your Car?
Let’s first start with whether it is legal for you to loan someone your car. Your license was Maybe you are in arrears for child support. Perhaps you forgot to pay parking tickets. You may have a suspended license for an accumulation of traffic points or failure to have insurance. Or, possibly lost your license for driving under the influence.
The reason your license is suspended has nothing to do with whether your motor vehicle can be on the road. You can’t drive it, but that doesn’t mean someone else isn’t able to get behind the wheel. Of course, there are some considerations. Your car must be registered with the Division of Motor Vehicles.
New Jersey requires that all motor vehicles also have at least a nominal insurance policy. If your license is suspended, you might find that’s it difficult to get coverage.
Why Were You Asked to Loan Your Car?
You are confident that you have the necessary registration and insurance coverage. Even your inspection sticker is up to date. There’s not even a problem with your own license. You don’t see a problem with helping out a buddy. Or, is there?
Before you loan out your car, you may want to think things through to the fullest extent. Why doesn’t your friend have his or her own vehicle? Was there a DWI conviction? Is their car just in the shop, or was it involved in a wreck?
You may not want to be nosy for fear of coming off as a bad friend. However, you need to take care of yourself first. Or, face the consequences.
The most obvious issue is ensuring that whoever is borrowing your car has a valid driver’s license. It doesn’t matter if the person is your mother, your brother or your best friend since fifth grade.
If you are loaning out your car, check to make sure you are letting someone use it who has a valid New Jersey license. There should be no exceptions to this rule. Absolutely, none.
What Happens if There is an Accident?
If your automobile is in an accident and someone else is driving it, there is one obvious consequence. Property damages could result in a total loss. Or, you could be saddled with paying a deductible. That doesn’t sound very fair, does it? Is that worth the risk of loaning out your car?
There’s one other significant problem. What if the person driving your car causes the accident? Are you aware that you could be sued even if you weren’t involved?