An Excluded Driver in the Other Vehicle Makes Your Uninsured Motorist Claim

by Laura H.
(Maryland)

I was hit by a driver who had the owner’s permission to be driving the car, but the insurance company tells me that he is an excluded driver. How can they deny the claim if the car owner tells me he had her permission to drive it? Isn’t this permissive use? Sid K., Sykesville


It might seem at first that you are right; if driver of the vehicle has permission to drive, then your explanation fits the technical definition of permissive use. Usually, that alone would give the driver full coverage under the policy. However, the insurance policy or contract trumps permission from the owner. If the insurance policy specifically states that a certain named person is an excluded driver, and that person drives the insured vehicle and is involved in accident, then he or she is excluded from the policy and enjoys none of its coverages. That includes not only all first party coverages such as collision, rental, towing, medical and the like, but also the protection of the policy’s liability coverage.

The fact that the vehicle is being driven by a person listed as an excluded driver on the policy makes it essentially uninsured. Therefore, you are able to go to your own insurance policy and pursue your claims for damage and personal injury under your uninsured motorist coverage. (Click here for an explanation of those coverages.) If the accident was not your fault, then there should be no affect on your premium.

This article was written and approved for informational purposes and is not intended to take the place of competent local legal counsel.

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