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Getting a Traffic Ticket in Someone Else’s Car: Who’s Responsible?

police SUV car pulling over white sedan car

Did You Get Pulled Over While Driving Someone Else’s Car?

Your friend lets you borrow their car, thinking they can trust you to bring it back in one piece. Unfortunately, you get pulled over for texting while driving. Although your friend’s car is still in one piece, your heart is broken into a million little pieces. You wonder, “Will my insurance cover someone else’s car? Do traffic tickets follow the car or the driver? How am I going to break the news to my friend?”

These questions are completely normal and understandable. Rest assured, however, that your friend will not get in as much trouble as you may think. Although you borrowed their car, your traffic ticket should not follow them. It will follow you, meaning you will be required to pay your ticket.

Your insurance rates may increase as well. Typically, getting a ticket in someone else’s car only results in insurance penalties for the ticketed driver — the person who is responsible — rather than the owner of the vehicle. The same rule applies to driver’s license points. Your driving record may suffer added driving points, potentially resulting in license suspension, but your friend’s driving record will NOT get any added points. Again, if you get a ticket while driving someone else car, you will almost always be accountable for paying the ticket, paying your insurance premiums, and dealing with any added points and penalties.

However, your friend must be aware of their insurance policy. Some policies allow policyholders to lend their cars to other people, while others do not. If your friend let you borrow their car despite their insurance company prohibiting it, they will be responsible for the repercussions. So, if you got a ticket in their car, your friend’s insurance company may find out about the incident and punish them.

What about getting a traffic ticket in a rental car or zipcar? In New York, numerous individuals and families rent zipcars or rental cars to drive around the city. If you got a traffic ticket while driving a rental car or zipcar, then you should report it to the rental company right away. Take a look at the contract you signed before getting the keys to the rental car, as it may outline the steps to follow if you get a traffic ticket or get into an accident.

If you don’t report your traffic ticket to the rental company, it may violate your contract and result in extra fees and penalties on top of the penalties associated with your ticket.

Let Us Fight Your Traffic Ticket

Whether you got a ticket in someone else’s car or your own car, know that legal help is just a phone call away. Our New York traffic ticket lawyer at Martin A. Kron & Associates, P.C. is dedicated to helping you overcome your traffic ticket case. As a former traffic court judge, our lawyer has the insights and skillsets needed to help you come out on top!

Contact us at (212) 235-1525 to discuss your situation today.