Irving, TX asked in Car Accidents, Personal Injury and Small Claims for Texas

Q: Is the vehicle owner liable instead of driver in Texas? Can the owner be sued?

Driver was not the registered owner. A claim was then filed against her insurance company after the accident. She provided her insurance information to me. Her insurance declined the claim. The Insurance do not provide liability coverage for any person for that person's liability arising out of the ownership or operation of a vehicle while it is being used to carry persons or property for a fee or rented or leased to another person.

3 Lawyer Answers
Rick  Davis
Rick Davis
Answered
  • Personal Injury Lawyer
  • Bryan, TX
  • Licensed in Texas

A: In theory, an injured Plaintiff might sue the owner of a car even if the owner was not driving under a cause of action for "negligent entrustment."

Tim Akpinar agrees with this answer

Tim Akpinar
Tim Akpinar
Answered
  • Personal Injury Lawyer
  • Little Neck, NY

A: I can't speak for Texas civil practice, but in most jurisdictions, they are generally both named on legal papers. That is not likely to be an irregularity in most places. If the driver is in the same household and listed on a policy, it's not usually a problem. What appears to be more concerning is the denial based on the use of the vehicle, as it appears the use is being declared as some type of commercial use rather than an ordinary personal use of the vehicle. If vehicles are used to carry passengers for hire or other commercial purposes, a carrier could argue it as a policy violation. That's something you may want to consult with a Texas attorney about. Good luck

Tim Akpinar

Doug Goyen
Doug Goyen
PREMIUM
Answered
  • Personal Injury Lawyer
  • Addison, TX
  • Licensed in Texas

A: Both the driver and owner may have different insurance - you can collect against either one. You also may have a claim under your uninsured motorist coverage if there is no insurance for the at-fault driver.

The end of your inquiry says something about the insurance company denying due to the driver using the vehicle "for a fee or rented or leased to another person". I am not sure what the "fee" or "rental" situation is here, but if the vehicle was an Uber or Lyft (vehicle was being used for a fee), you will want to contact the company the driver was working for and submit a claim there.

Tim Akpinar agrees with this answer

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