(OnFocus) If considering making extra cash as an Uber or Lyft driver, consider whether your insurance will provide coverage.
While a driver doesn’t need a commercial auto policy for taxi services, a personal auto policy doesn’t cover everything. Since most personal and commercial policies have exclusions, drivers should find out how their policy will respond during certain times on the job.
“There are three different phases of coverage: first, app is turned off; second, app turned on, in driver mode, waiting to accept a ride; third, match notification. Drivers need to be mindful of what phase their personal policy will respond, if at all,” said Ryan Arnoldy, Commercial Risk Agent, Marshfield Insurance.
Uber and Lyft provide contingent liability when the app is turned on and waiting to accept a ride. “This means that their liability will respond in the event that your personal insurance doesn’t,” Arnoldy said. “However, they only provide $50,000 bodily injury per person, $100,000 bodily injury maximum limit per accident & $25,000 property damage liability, which is very low.”
The ride-share company provides primary liability insurance from the time a driver accepts a ride request until the ride has ended in the app.
“There is $1,000,000 of coverage per accident. Uber & Lyft will also provide contingent collision and comprehensive coverage,” he said. “This is designed to cover physical damage to your vehicle resulting from an accident as long as you have obtained collision and comprehensive coverage on your personal automobile policy.”
Ultimately, drivers need to know how their policy will respond in a gray area, such as when the app is open and waiting to accept a ride, and if there are any ride-share exclusions.
“Bottom, bottom line, tell your agent what you’re doing so you can be covered correctly. There are products and endorsements available to eliminate coverage gaps,” said Arnoldy.