Homeowner’s policies are not written to provide coverage for motor vehicles, in any traditional sense. However, with the advent of new technology we see more motorized toy vehicles which could be described as a “motor vehicle”. For insurance purposes a “motor vehicle” is defined as a self-propelled land or amphibious vehicle. This includes, but is not limited to motorized toys like golf and go carts, ATVs, snowmobiles and children’s toy cars. This is complicated for parents today; fortunately the insurance world has adjusted to these needs and provided homeowner’s with the following clarifications. These items are covered for property damage under your homeowner’s property coverage unless they need to be registered. or they have a specific insurance policy to cover them.

Liability is the real talking point. Are you covered if your child’s toy gets into an accident and someone is injured? The answer is: to a degree. The loss would have to occur on an “insured location”, this would not only include your property but also a rental property, a facility rented to hold a private party or a family cemetery plot. The vehicle must also be intended for children under age 7 and cannot be built or modified to exceed 5 miles per hour. Your child’s friend being injured in your driveway would be covered, but I wouldn’t recommend driving the toy car to the park any time soon. It’s also worth noting that a child over the age of 7 who decides to use the vehicle and injures someone may not be covered, as you operated outside of the toys intended usage.

Here’s a good rule of thumb: if it has wheels and a motor, keep it on your property or make sure your child is aware they are the only person who should be using it. And remember, always wear a helmet!