I LOANED MY CAR TO A FRIEND IN OCALA, AND HE GOT INTO AN ACCIDENT THAT WAS HIS FAULT, AM I RESPONSIBLE?

The short answer is, yes. Many people do not realize that the owner of the at-fault vehicle is first in line and the primary party responsible for legal liability issues regarding damages and injuries caused in an accident; the driver of the vehicle is second.

Jeffrey Meldon Tip: Sometimes it is hard to tell a good friend that you would rather not let them borrow your car, but remember if something happens, you will be on the hook. It is a good idea to let them know if they want to borrow your car, and you are willing to let them, to remind them to be extra careful because you will be responsible if they make a mistake.

Also, if there is an accident caused by a vehicle you lent out and the injured person’s case exceeds your insurance policy limits, you could lose everything you own (other than your homestead).

As an example, recently we represented a woman injured in an Ocala personal injury auto accident case that was not her fault. In this case the person that was primarily responsible for the crash was not even in his car at the time of the accident. He was comfortably at home on his couch watching a football game. He was the owner of the at-fault vehicle and had lent his car to a friend to run up to the corner store. Now he was facing legal claims against him by the injured woman. The woman, our client, was able to collect against the car owner for the full amount of his insurance policy which was the value of the woman’s injuries and the driver of the vehicle that actually caused the accident ended up having to pay nothing. Not only did his insurance company have to pay for injuries suffered in the accident, his insurance rates will end up increasing.

We at Meldon Law strongly believe that public education is the first step in the prevention of an accident or in the recovery from one.

We are experienced personal injury attorneys, trial lawyers, negotiators, litigators, paralegals, and staff that have been proudly working to get accident victims the justice they deserve for over 40 years in Gainesville, Ocala, Lake City, Inverness, and the rest of North Central Florida and North Florida. Accidents involving a car crash, truck wreck, and motorcycle, bicycle, or pedestrian accidents, dog bites, slip and falls, medical malpractice, and criminal defense are all included in our practice.

Based on Jeffrey Meldon’s, founder of Meldon Law, over 40 years of helping accident victims get justice and a fair shake from the insurance companies, he has written the consumer guide book, Seven Mistakes That Can Wreck Your Florida Accident Case. You can request your free, no obligation copy right now, or contact our office for your complimentary copy sent to you today.

Contact Meldon Law at (800) 373-8000 or (352) 373-8000 immediately if you have been involved in a serious auto, truck, or motorcycle accident. We are in your community, have the experience and resources required to work towards obtaining a fair settlement for you – we are here to help you.

Jeffrey Meldon
Founder of the Meldon Law Firm