What Happens If You Get Into a Car Crash During a Test Drive?

Let’s face it. No one is perfect, and statistically speaking, you’re likely to get into at least one car crash during your various years on the road. While crashing will inevitably lead to a bad day, you’re covered by your insurance company in most cases. However, when you crash a brand-new or used vehicle you’re thinking of buying, things cant get quite messy in the process.

According to Auto.HowStuffWorks, crashing a car owned by a dealership is no big deal, thanks to their specialized insurance policies. Even if you damage a vehicle owned by a private party, you’re likely still covered.

What happens if someone gets into a car crash testing out your car?

An image of a crashed car out on the road.
Car Crash Image |Artyom GeodakyanTASS via Getty Images

Since a car crash can happen in various situations, let’s look at various possible situations. According to Joyce J. Sweinberg, a car accident lawyer via Avvo, allowing someone to drive your car, even on a test drive, in most cases means that your insurance company covers them. As a result, if someone gets into an accident during a test drive, your insurance company will have to pay for the damage.

If you’re the buyer, in this case, it’s fairly safe to test that car. That’s because the seller assumes most of the potential risk. However, it is worth mentioning that laws vary from state to state. Regardless most lawyers on Avvo agree that the vehicle’s current owner is on the hook for its value.

Do car dealers have insurance for test drives?

An image of a crashed car out on the road.
Crashed Car Paul Zinken/picture alliance via Getty Images)

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As you might imagine, dealerships with a large number of cars sitting on their lots have a niche insurance policy. According to Auto.HowStuffWorks, there are specialized insurance companies that offer both property and casualty coverage. As a result, this covers cars that get stolen or damaged while sitting on a dealership lot.

If you’re out on a test drive, these insurance companies will also cover you in case of a car crash. However, don’t be surprised if the dealership asks for your personal insurance information regardless. According to Auto.HowStuffWorks, it is very rare that a person’s insurance has to pay out in these cases, but it can happen.

Keep in mind that these factors are largely affected by the state you’re testing in, the car’s value, and the specific dealership.

What happens if someone who isn’t on your insurance crashes your car?

An image of a crashed car out on the road.
Car Crash | STR/Thai PBS via AFPTV/AFP via Getty Images

Let’s say a car crash doesn’t happen on a test drive at all. If, for example, someone in your family were to take your car out and destroy it, the issue of insurance pops back up.

According to Policy Genius, your insurance company will still cover that accident. However, it is worth noting that the person will pay to pay out of pocket for any damages that exceed your coverage limit. Regardless, now you know how safe you are when testing out your potential next purchase.