What to do if I borrowed a vehicle and was in an accident involving 2 other vehicles but unbeknownst to me the insurance policy on the vehicle that I was driving had lapsed?

This made me an uninsured motorist. Now the insurance agemcies for the other 2 parties involved are trying to get me pay for all damages. Do I have any options?

Asked on February 21, 2013 under Accident Law, Oregon


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 7 years ago | Contributor

If you have your own vehicle, it's possible that your driver's insurance covers you when you are driving another car; it's also possible that if you have a homeowner's policy with umbrella coverage, that it would apply.  Check your insurance policies to see if they do.

A lack of insurance does not prevent others from suing you--it just means you don't have insurance to bear the cost. On the other hand, you must have been at fault in some way, such as by driving negligently, or carelessly, to be liable, or financially responsible. If you do not believe you were at fault and believe the facts support you, if they sue you, you could defend against their claims on that basis; a lawyer would be tremendously helpful.

If you think you may be at fault, you may wish to try to settle the claims for some lesser amount, or with a plan allowing you to pay over time. If you can't or don't want to do that, then if you are sued and the other parties get large judgments against you, you may wish to consider bankruptcy as an option.

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