Occasionally you may have to drive someone else’s car whether it’s to take a friend or relative home from the hospital, or pop to the shops for your partner.
While you may think you’re automatically covered under driving other cars on your car insurance policy for this, it might not be that straightforward.
It’s part of your policy that allows you to drive other people’s cars with third party only cover without the need to buy additional temporary insurance, or be added as a named driver, as long as you have permission.
However, many people don’t understand if they have this included in their insurance policy and what situations they would be covered for.
These are the some of the common misconceptions about driving other cars cover and what the facts are:
FACT: While DOC cover used to be included as standard on most fully comprehensive insurance policies, this isn’t the case anymore.
If you’re unsure if you have this cover, check your certificate of motor insurance in My Account, and that will confirm if it is included or not.
If you are covered to drive other cars, then be aware it will not be with the same fully comprehensive cover you have on your own car. Most insurers will only cover you to drive other cars with third party only cover.
FACT: Many people may think it’s just a case of giving permission, but it’s not as simple as that.
If someone else wants to drive your car, they will need their own car insurance with driving other cars cover. They will not be covered under your policy.
If someone wants to borrow your car and they don’t have DOC cover, they will either need to be added to your policy or take out temporary insurance.
FACT: It depends.
If you’re borrowing someone else’s van then you may be covered under your comprehensive policy but it’s no longer included as standard. If driving other cars won’t cover you to drive a van, then you will need to be insured to operate that specific vehicle.
Again, you can be added to the van’s existing insurance or take out temporary cover.
FACT: While DOC and temporary insurance are used for similar purposes, they actually exist for very different reasons.
DOC is intended for emergency use only and will only cover you for third party damage to other vehicles.
Temporary cover is for short term use, can be fully comprehensive and added for up to 30 days.
It can be useful if your son or daughter is home from university, and you want them to have use of your car, or if you and a friend are sharing driving responsibilities on a road trip.
FACT: Driving other cars is not available to everyone. To be eligible for Admiral cover, you will need to be over 25, have fully comprehensive insurance and the other car will also need its own insurance in place.
Bear in mind, that some certain occupations will prevent you from having DOC. For example, if you work in the motor trade and often drive other cars, you will not be eligible for cover.
Remember, DOC is meant to be used in emergency situations and is not a substitute for car insurance. If you are unsure whether you have DOC cover then always check with your insurer before driving any other vehicle.
If you’re caught driving someone else’s car without DOC, you can get a conviction of driving without insurance, a fine and even end up in court.