An "excluded driver" is a designation on an auto insurance policy that a specific person will not be covered by the insurance. This is typically done by signing a "driver exclusion endorsement."
There are several reasons you might want to exclude a driver. For example, a driver who’s had past accidents and claims can push up your insurance bill significantly. By excluding them, you can hold down your costs.
If you exclude a driver, it’s very important to make sure they do not drive the car. If the excluded person drives the car and has an accident, you will not have insurance coverage and you and the driver could be held personally liable for any injuries and damages.
If the excluded person drives a different car, be sure they are covered under that vehicle’s insurance.
The rules for excluding drivers can vary by state and insurance company. Some states will not allow any driver exclusions. Here are some examples of rules for driver exclusions:
- Financial hardships – You may be required to prove that having the driver on your policy causes you a financial hardship because of the car insurance bill.
- Medical impairment – Some insurance companies may allow exclusions only for drivers who have medical impairments and therefore don’t drive.
- Major traffic violation – Some insurance companies may only exclusions allow for drivers who have a major traffic violation, like a DUI conviction.
- Proof of insurance – You may be required to prove an excluded driver is insured on another auto insurance policy for a different vehicle.
- Spouses and dependents – Some states will not allow excluding spouses or dependents.
|State||Does state allow driver exclusions from auto insurance?|
|District of Columbia||Yes|
|Source: American Property Casualty Insurance Association|
Who should be listed on an auto insurance policy?
Typically an auto insurance company will want everyone in the household to be listed on your auto insurance policy because they likely have access to your car. This means that a spouse, children with driver’s licenses, parents who live with you and even roommates should be listed.
This could even include drivers with inactive, expired, revoked or suspended licenses, or someone who recently moved to the United States and has a foreign driver’s license.
You may need to list people who drive your car even if they don’t live in your household. This could include teens in a shared-custody arrangement, nannies, caregivers, co-signers listed on a car loan or someone listed on your car registration, such as a parent.
If you’re unsure who must be listed on your policy, it’s a good idea to speak with your insurance agent.
What happens if an excluded driver has an accident?
If an excluded driver gets into an accident with your car, your auto insurance company won’t cover the car damage. You could be held liable for any injuries and property damage they cause. It could also lead to the cancellation or non-renewal of your auto insurance policy.
If an excluded driver takes your car without permission, it could be considered a theft. That means car damage may be covered under comprehensive insurance, if you have it. Depending on your state laws, you might not be held liable for injuries and property damage the excluded driver causes in this situation. However, you would have to prove the vehicle was stolen and file a police report.
Can someone drive my car if they are not on my insurance?
Someone else (who’s not an excluded driver) can occasionally drive your car with your permission and will usually be covered under your auto insurance policy.
Note that car insurance follows the vehicle, not the driver. When you lend your car to someone, your car insurance goes with it. So will any repercussions if they crash. For example, if you have to make a collision claim you’ll have a deductible. And accidents and claims can lead to rate increases, no matter who was driving. So be careful about who gets to drive your car.