Q: If I lend my car to a licensed driver who does not own a car (and therefore does not have car insurance), am I liable for injuries in the event of an accident?
A: The answer is “yes, absolutely!” The owner of a vehicle in NYS is vicariously liable for the negligence of the driver, whether or not the driver has his own auto insurance. The rationale behind this is that car owners are the easiest party to make responsible because they have to register their vehicles and in order to get registered, you have to be insured. The best thing to do is not loan your car to anyone and to put your children’s cars in their own names as well.
Donnalynn Darling is the Chair of the Personal Injury and Medical Malpractice groups at Meyer, Suozzi, English & Klein, P.C. located in Garden City, N.Y. Ms. Darling’s practice focuses on plaintiff’s personal injury trial work, as well as trials of catastrophic tort and wrongful death cases. She routinely represents clients who have been seriously injured or killed in bicycle, truck, train, plane, bus, and car accidents, dog bites, construction accidents, injuries resulting from premises liability, assault and battery, rape and other intentional acts. Ms. Darling also represents workers who are injured as a result of New York State Labor Law violations in construction accidents involving falls from scaffolds, ladders and crane collapses.
For the past fifty years, the law firm of Meyer, Suozzi, English & Klein, P.C. has created a reputation for integrity, insight and intellect that has helped establish the standard for excellence in the practice of law. With offices in Albany, Garden City, Manhattan and Washington, D.C., the firm provides legal advice in the areas of Alternative Dispute Resolution, Bankruptcy, Corporate Finance, Corporate, Criminal Defense, Disability Insurance Claims, Employee Benefits, Employment Law, Government Relations, Labor Law, Litigation, Real Estate, Tax Certiorari & Condemnation, Trusts, Wills and Estates. “Ask the Lawyer” is provided by Meyer, Suozzi, English & Klein, P.C. to inform on matters of public interest. The information contained herein is not to be construed as legal advice or opinion. We provide such advice or opinion only after being engaged to do so with respect to particular facts and circumstances.