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If I’m involved in an accident driving my grandmother’s car, will the damage be covered?

I was driving my grandmother’s car and am not listed as a driver on her MetLife insurance policy. Her car is registered in Rhode Island and I was driving it in New York. I made a dent in the driver’s side quarter panel above the wheel. (It was dark and he was parked in a driving lane of the parking lot.) The car is a leased Audi. The dealer gave a quote of about $1755. The lessee will get a quote from an independent shop today, but he is very concerned about repercussions for taking his leased car anywhere but the dealer. Ideally I would like to pay for the repair out of pocket, but 1755 is far, far more than I can afford.

Agent Answer

Neil Richardson

Luckily, most insurance policies allow for permissive use drivers, so the damage you caused should be covered under your grandmother’s policy as long as you aren’t a full-time driver. Unfortunately, your grandmother’s insurance rate is likely to increase after the claim since it will be considered an At Fault accident. Our State of Insurance report shows that an At Fault accident will have an average impact of about $581 in additional premium per year for 3 years so that’s something to consider. As far as the repair facility is concerned, the other driver should have a choice to get the vehicle repaired at any location they prefer. If you aren’t able to afford the repair costs out of your own pocket then your only other choice would be to file a claim.

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