Car insurance: novice drivers at the wheel of the family car

A study by a major insurer shows that 43 percent of drivers under 25 still use their parents’ cars. But what do you need to know about car insurance when you let your children take the wheel?? versicherungsbote has compiled some important facts.


According to a representative yougov survey commissioned by axa, almost half of 18-24 year-old drivers use their parents’ cars. For the study, 1.723 driver’s license holders surveyed. But what do you have to bear in mind with regard to insurance cover??

Comprehensive insurance must also pay for damage if the children were at the wheel

the good news first: a vehicle owner’s motor vehicle liability must pay for the damage if the children were at the wheel, even though they are not registered in the car insurance policy. And that even applies to fully comprehensive insurance, as a ruling by the coburg regional court shows (az. 11 O 752/01), which was confirmed by the Bamberg Higher Regional Court in the second instance:

A father filed a lawsuit against the insurer after his son ran a stop sign and crashed into a car that had the right of way. Because the insurance company initially refused to reimburse the costs for the damage to the policyholder’s own car. The court, however, ordered the insurance company to pay.

the court explained that the son was not "representative" of the insurance company, which is why the father should not be held responsible for the son’s misconduct. the son would only be "representative" if the car was completely left to him and the son paid the maintenance costs himself. However, if the parents bear the maintenance costs and the children only drive with parental permission, the insurance company must pay for the damage.

Nevertheless, accidents involving children can be expensive

Nevertheless, there is a risk of high costs if the offspring have an accident with their parents’ car. As a policyholder, you are not obliged to specify the driver’s circle when you take out a policy. However, if an accident occurs and another person is driving the car, the insurance company can demand a subsequent payment of the higher premium, including the actual driver and retroactively from the current insurance year. What’s more, some insurers also impose contractual penalties if the company can prove that the driver’s details were deliberately omitted. According to the test.De the penalty is often the amount of an annual premium.

With an extended driver’s circle it becomes really expensive even without an accident

The insurance magazine "versicherungsbote" had calculated it: if you have 18-year-old children in the house and want them to drive, you have to reckon with a premium that is up to three times as high. Because the insurance premium reflects the individual risk of damage and is particularly high for young drivers. Young drivers usually start with the expensive no-claims class 0, for which 95 – 100 % of the basic premium is charged. This also has an impact on the parents’ vehicle insurance policies as soon as the children are included in the driving group.

Even with the most favorable example, a fully comprehensive insurance at a price of €383.20 for a fiat 500, the premium increased to €1079.20 by expanding the group of drivers.

Suggestions for saving: accompanied driving, transfer of no-claims classes

Motor insurers reward accompanied driving from 17 years of age

car insurance: novice drivers at the wheel of the family car

Motor insurance – the right thing to do after an accident

car insurance: novice drivers at the wheel of the family car

car insurance: save money as a beginner driver

But how can savings be made despite the expensive entry for the offspring?? If the children are still under 18 years old, "accompanied driving from 17" would be a possibility. Statistics show that accompanied driving reduces the risk of accidents. This is why novice drivers who take their driving test at the age of 17 and take part in "accompanied driving" also receive preferential rates for vehicle insurance.

Insurers also allow parents to transfer accident-free years to their children, so that the children receive comparatively favorable entry conditions. However, this is only possible if the children have a driver’s license but do not yet have their own insurance policy. Can only be transferred as many years as the recipient has a driver’s license.

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Christina Cherry
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