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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2008
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    4

    Default Driving A Car On Friend's Auto Insurance

    My question involves insurance law for the state of: MICHIGAN

    I am an unlicensed driver in the state of MI. My friend leased a new car in her name and did the same with insurance so I have a vehicle to drive. I pay half of her monthly insurance premium on her car, pay all on the car I drive and the lease payment for her to do this for me. Since the car is insured she is not liable if anything happens right? If I am not at fault if there happens to be an accident, what happens besides me going to jail for no license? I just need some clarity to make sure I'm not pulling a fast one on my friend.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    28,906

    Default Re: Driving A Car On Friend's Auto Insurance

    Michigan has an owner liability law, meaning that the owner of a vehicle is liable for the negligent driving acts of somebody driving their car with their permission. So yes, she can be held liable if you cause an accident. Further, if the insurance company figures out the nature of the fraud you are committing, they'll deny any coverage.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2008
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    4

    Default Re: Driving A Car On Friend's Auto Insurance

    Only if I cause the accident? Also, I would have to say I took the car without her permission if anything happened to keep her from being liable, correct? She lives on the other side of the state so having the insurance company find out is not possible.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    9,096

    Default Re: Driving A Car On Friend's Auto Insurance

    Okay.

    You are willingly and openly committing insurance fraud. That is a felony.

    You are willingly and openly driving without a valid license. That is a misdemeanor.

    You are willingly and openly driving without insurance coverage (because you don't have any). That is a misdemeanor.

    When caught, your friend has two options. Say she is in on your little scam (in which she gets the felony count as well as you do) or she says you stole the car.

    Welcome to Grand Theft Auto.

    This is a really bad idea. Get your own license, your own car and your own insurance. I realize that you don't care about your own driving record, but is this really how you are going to thank a friend that is helping you out?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    9,096

    Default Re: Driving A Car On Friend's Auto Insurance

    Quote Quoting ~HOLLYWOOD~
    View Post
    Only if I cause the accident? Also, I would have to say I took the car without her permission if anything happened to keep her from being liable, correct? She lives on the other side of the state so having the insurance company find out is not possible.
    No.

    If you are IN an accident everything happens. If you are pulled over, everything happens.

    If you try out your whole "I took the car without permission" thing, you get charged with GTA... at least up until it is realized that you two are both paying for the car.

    Then you both go to prison for insurance fraud.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    28,906

    Default Re: Driving A Car On Friend's Auto Insurance

    A prosecution for insurance fraud is unlikely. If a claim is made, the most likely consequence is that it will be denied. Besides, there are plenty of other charges to file.

    Adding a "filing a false police report" charge for your friend isn't a good idea. The police are pretty good at figuring that stuff out, particularly where the car isn't reported stolen until after the accident occurs.

    The location of the insurance office is irrelevant. Accident claims can be investigated anywhere, in-state or out.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    38,789

    Default Re: Driving A Car On Friend's Auto Insurance

    bottom line; you and your friend are committing crimes and are one slip away from being caught. That can be a very expensive slip.

    So, why do you not have a license?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Posts
    4

    Default Re: Driving A Car On Friend's Auto Insurance

    So the better way to go is to cancel the insurance to avoid a felony...since no one is covered anyhow and to just plain save the money. These answers seem very educated, so how or which way should I approach this to avoid the most legal trouble and so my friend doesn't go down in flames with myself?

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    28,906

    Default Re: Driving A Car On Friend's Auto Insurance

    Your best choice is to not drive until you have a valid driver's license.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Posts
    4

    Default Re: Driving A Car On Friend's Auto Insurance

    Quote Quoting aaron
    View Post
    Your best choice is to not drive until you have a valid driver's license.
    Impossible, so I do this and become yet another leech on MI's economy? Not me. I have a job that must be accomplished, and money to earn. So I get pulled over......the judge gives me fines which I can only pay by having a job, but not able to get to when he/she says 'your license is suspended, don't drive'. There are two sides to every story, mine being the retarded one. I was an idiot as a kid but how long is a person expected to pay for a mistake?

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