The popularity of rideshare services such as Uber and Lyft continues to rise, giving traditional transportation services, such as taxis, a run for their money. If you have found an employment opportunity as a rideshare driver, you may be wondering what kind of insurance you will need and who is liable in an accident — the driver, the company, or both? Let’s see if we can answer of few of your questions here.
As a rideshare driver, you are an independent contractor employed by the rideshare service. You will be required to use your own vehicle since these services do not own or operate their own vehicles nor do they hire drivers directly. Since you are employed as an independent contractor, using your own vehicle, Uber and Lyft do not have employer liability if there is an accident.
What you should know is that your personal auto policy typically does not cover you while you are using your vehicle as an Uber or Lyft driver. There is some ambiguity as to whether a personal auto policy will cover any accidents that happen when the driver is not actually logged into the Uber or Lyft app. While you are logged into the app, Uber or Lyft will cover any damages or injuries caused to others if you are involved in an at-fault accident. However, there is no coverage for your injuries or for damage to your vehicle.
There are a couple of solutions available to rideshare drivers:
#1 Buy a rideshare insurance policy: You can buy a rideshare insurance policy that offers coverage for after you’ve accepted a ride request. However, not all policies cover you while you are waiting to receive a pick-up request. Rideshare policies also need to be available in the states where you will be driving. (If you buy a rideshare policy, you’ll need to disclose this information to your personal auto insurance carrier.)
#2 Buy a commercial auto insurance policy: A commercial insurance policy has your bases covered as a rideshare driver. It will cover all phases of the job, from waiting on passengers, accepting a drive request and driving passengers to their destinations.
Rideshare services are providing exciting new employment opportunities to many. If you’d like to discuss the type of auto insurance you will need as a rideshare driver, give us a call and we’ll be glad to go over all the options.
Learn more about Manning Insurance Services’ Commercial Auto Insurance.