Who Pays When You Crash A Company Car?

Posted by Ben Davidson about 8 months ago

Crashing a car is never ideal but things are a whole lot more complicated if you crash a company car. You’ll have to break the news to your boss who isn’t going to be happy and then there’s the question of who pays for the damage. Is it you or your insurance company, or does your boss pay for it on their insurance? Or maybe it’s the other person involved in the accident? If you’re not sure, read this quick guide to who pays when you crash a company car.


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Personal Or Business Use?


This is the first question you need to answer; were they using it for personal use or business use? If they were driving to or from work, or they were going to see a client, that counts as business use. If they’re using the car for businesses purposes then they should be covered by the employers insurance. However, if they’re using the car outside of work hours, or they’re driving it on their lunch break for a non-work related purpose then things are a little different. Even though it’s a company car, they aren’t using it for work at that moment in time so if they crash, they are liable for the damage which means that they or their insurance company should be covering the cost of repairs.


Who Is At Fault?


You can avoid that first question entirely if you work out who is at fault. If the employee wasn’t at fault and somebody, for example, crashed into the back of them while they were waiting at the lights then it’s not your problem. It’s down to the person that hit them to cover the cost of the repairs. In an ideal world they’d own up and give you the money right away but unfortunately, things aren’t always that easy. Nobody likes the idea of parting with a load of money so they’ll fight you on it. In that case, you need to get a lawyer to help you fight the case. If the employee was hurt, you’ll need a lawyer for injury in car accident to help you claim the money that they’re entitled to. You can use it to cover the cost of the repairs and they’ll get a bit extra too. Things get really tricky if both sides claim that they were not at fault and it isn’t clear who is to blame. In that situation, it might have to fall to the employee to pay up.


Should The Employee Be Disciplined?


Once the money has been sorted out, the employer might decide that they want to discipline the employee that crashed the car but that isn’t always the right choice. If driving is a major part of their job then it’s a big issue that they crashed and they should be disciplined. However, if they just use the company car to get to and from work, you don’t really have grounds to discipline them. You can take the car away from them to avoid any more accidents though.


The most important thing to consider is who is at fault, if it isn’t the employee then you don’t need to deal with any of this. If it is their fault, it’s time to start thinking about who pays.


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