Every week we’ll highlight a question sent to our resident insurance expert, Anne Marie Thomas. This week’s question comes from Karin who is asking why damages to the vehicle she drives are not covered by the car’s auto insurance policy which is in her father-in-law’s name.
“I got into an accident 2 weeks ago and the insurance company doesn’t want to fix my vehicle!!! The car was still driveable, and the airbags never deployed!
“So, this is the question, does the owner of a vehicle have to be under the same insurance policy?
“The vehicle is leased, my sister co-signed the vehicle, and my fiance is the other owner of the vehicle for the plates. I pay the car payments and am the primary driver of the vehicle. The insurance is under my father-in-law’s name cause neither me or my fiance were able to get insurance!”
The problem likely stems from the fact that the policyholder isn’t the registered owner of the vehicle, explains Anne Marie.
“In order for an auto insurance policy to be valid, the policy must be issued in the name of the registered owner of the vehicle. From what you’re describing it sounds like your father-in-law is not the registered owner which means there is no valid insurance policy in force on the car. If the insurance company finds there is no valid policy in force, you may not have any coverage for the damage to your vehicle.”
Even when the circumstances are complex, being completely upfront and open is essential when purchasing an auto insurance policy.
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