That depends on the insurance company. Some will send you a check, and others will only pay the shop.
Legally, its the friends because the insurance was in the friends name. Insurance checks are meant to be used on repairs to the vehicle or toward the purchase of a new vehicle. So you could try to force the friend to use the check toward the vehicle by taking them to court. Or you can start paying for your own insurance and not have to worry about the loyalty of your friends.
Each state has different time periods of filing an insurance claim after an accident. Check with you state to make sure you do not miss the filing period.
You can't claim insurance pay if you got accident instead of your license.
You can it just wont help that current accident (only future accidents)and the rates will be higher priced. If you want to get cheap rates following your accident (which is normally hard to do), you can check out 4autoinsurancequote, which is offering insurance coverage starting at $20/month.
Only if the insurance covers more than one driver. Check the policy.
It depends on if you have a lien placed on your vehicle (by you lender. If you own the car free and clear, you can take the insurance money and not repair the car, but if there is a lien on your vehicle more often than not the insurance company will make the check out to you and your bank.
You need to check with your agent or policy services for you company. They can tell you their rules for accident/claims related rate increases.
There are several different options in order to get an Accident Cover insurance. Depending on the country one lives in one might check for example "Aviva plc" (British insurance company) or "eHealthInsurance" (American company) - just to list two of them.
Not all car insurance plans provide loaner cars when your car is in the shop after an accident. This is a convenience which may or may not be offered. Check with your insurance company to see if this service is provided.
Always if in California. Check your local DMV office. But many people do not and the insurance company will figure it out anyway.
Usually yes. It depends on the brand of insurance though. You should check with your provider to be sure.
Yes. It's unusual, but not illegal. I did this a couple of years ago, to keep my insurance payments down. Sometimes bodyshops and such are set up just to deal with insurance claims, so you will need to explain that you are paying out of your own pocket (usually by bank check) but they were pretty friendly about it.