In this weekend’s Your Money column, I look at the many insurance questions that come up about the burgeoning peer-to-peer car-sharing industry. The basic question is this: If you turn your car into a Zipcar, in effect, what are the odds that you could end up in some sort of trouble if someone rents your car and then crashes it and hurts someone?
I raise three questions in the piece. First, whether you could be on the hook for an enormous judgment, beyond the $1 million in coverage that a company like RelayRides provides. Second, whether your failure to maintain the car properly could leave you exposed if someone rents it and gets in an accident because of, say, your bald tires.
Finally, I address the question of whether your insurance company would drop your coverage if it found out you were renting out your car. (It could only drop you in the states that would allow the company to do that; Washington, Oregon and California do not allow it.)
Please offer your own assessments of the risks in the comments below.
This is a more complete version of the story than the one that appeared in print.