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Rental Cars and Unauthorized Drivers

An insured called to advise that he was on vacation and renting a car in his name. He has a 19-year-old who he understands cannot drive the rental car by requirement of the rental car company. However, he is planning on letting the 19-year-old drive the car anyway. His question is:

Will his personal auto respond?

It is highly unlikely that his PAP would respond because of these exclusions:

Liability Exclusion:

  • Using a vehicle without a reasonable belief that "insured" is entitled to do so. This Exclusion does not apply to a "family member" using "your covered auto" which is owned by you.

Physical Damage Exclusion:

  • Loss to any "non-owned auto" when used by you or any "family member" without a reasonable belief that you or that "family member" are entitled to do so.

Clearly, the 19-year-old in not entitled to use the vehicle and it is presumed that he knows that. His only option would be to buy the rental company's liability and LDW/CDW coverages, although almost certainly they would be voided if an unauthorized driver is using the vehicle.

The solution here is for them to abide by the contract being signed. It is doubtful that teaching a young person to willfully violate agreements is a good lesson to be passing along anyway.