Can I Remove a Secondary Driver from My Car Insurance Policy?
From time to time, we have highlighted auto insurance questions we encounter on a fairly regular basis; questions about fault determination in a collision when one of the drivers doesn’t have insurance to how long it takes before a ticket drops off your driving record.
We haven’t touched on this scenario before, but it warrants looking into. A young man’s younger brother is the secondary driver listed on his insurance, and was ticketed for distracted driving (using his phone). The older brother wants to remove his sibling from the insurance policy before renewal so his rates don’t increase.
As most of us are aware by now, distracted driving is shockingly all too common. A recent survey found that 14% of Canadians admitted to texting or instant messaging while driving, 26% regularly check their messages while driving, and 41% have checked messages while stopped at a light.
Distracted driving is a significant safety issue on our roads. It’s entirely understandable, then, why a car’s owner might want to exclude a driver who can’t keep their hands off their phone from their policy, but there are ramifications to consider.
The car’s owner might be able to remove his brother from his policy, but the insurance company could require the brothers to sign a document stating that the younger brother who received the ticket will NEVER, under any circumstances, drive the vehicle. It does not matter if your friend gives his brother permission to drive the vehicle or if there is a family emergency; he will not be permitted to drive no matter what happens or the circumstances.
If the brother does drive the vehicle after the document is signed, there will be no insurance if he gets into an accident. This will leave the older brother financially responsible for all damages and injuries from the collision. And, if the younger brother is lucky enough not to get into a collision but gets pulled over by police for some reason, he could face some serious fines and consequences.