Is it legal for an auto insurer to add new driver onto a policy without consent from either the policy holder or the person being added?

UPDATED: Jun 8, 2011

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Is it legal for an auto insurer to add new driver onto a policy without consent from either the policy holder or the person being added?

I found this very odd when my boyfriend and his car was unknowingly added onto the policy of his father, when he already had insurance through another company that was in his name. I personally think it is a invasion of privacy, and a type of forgery since nobody even authorized the addition of another person and vehicle. Is this legal?

Asked on June 8, 2011 under Insurance Law, North Carolina


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

Yes, it may be legal. Insurance protects against risks. That means that it is important to disclose risks to ensure they are covered. If your boyfriend lives at home and/or frequently uses his father's car, it would be appropriate--and may even by necessary, under the terms of the policy--to add the boyfriend as another driver of the vehicle; otherwise, if he is in an accident involving his father's car, it's possible the insurance might be void. Your boyfriend can't be made to pay for another's policy if he doesn't want to; but just as an employer might have to list him as a driver, if he drove for his job, on the employer's insurance, if he uses or may reasonably use his father's car, he may have to be listed there. All that said, for a definitive answer, rather than an explanation of general principals, bring a copy of the father's policy to an attorney, describe the living, etc. situation to the lawyer, and let the lawyer evaluted the specifics of this case.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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