Business Auto insurance protects your company for losses related to owned or non-owned and rented autos. The following types of coverage are available within the business auto policy:
- Liability – Bodily Injury or Property Damage caused by an auto accident
- Physical Damage – damage to your vehicle caused by a collision or other type of loss
- Uninsured Motorist – Bodily Injury to you and your passengers caused by an uninsured or under-insured driver
- Medical Payments – “no fault” coverage for medical expenses related to a car accident for your passengers
According to a report by the Insurance Information Institute, the average jury awarded $1.145M in liability lawsuits in 2015. This type of loss, if uninsured, could devastate most businesses. The value proposition of business insurance makes this a compelling reason.
Symbols on Business Auto Policy
Symbols are assigned to vehicles and this impacts coverage, so it’s important to know what symbols are assigned. For example, if Symbol 7 is assigned, this can save you money on your rates, but requires a bit more diligence if you ever add vehicles to the policy.
Personal Use of Company Autos
When executives or others are furnished with company vehicles, which are also used for personal time, the Drive Other Car endorsement is required, unless they have a personal auto policy in force. Otherwise, the BAP does not offer coverage.
Hired & Non-Owned Autos
Nearly every organization has this exposure and coverage is often inexpensive. If you or your employees drive personal vehicles or rent vehicles on company business, then your organization has a significant exposure to liability.
If your business has mobile equipment subject to motor vehicle laws, then it must be identified by symbol 19 and covered under the BAP.
The definition of an “employee” includes “leased workers” and this creates a potential gap in coverage if worker is injured on the job. Under workers compensation statute, the leased worker falls under the employee leasing firm if they are injured while working for you.
However, the leased worker may select to claim damages against you for negligence, but the unendorsed Business Auto Policy will not respond due to the “employee” and “workers compensation” exclusions.
BEST SOLUTION: Ask the leasing firm to name you as an “alternate employer” on their Work Comp and Employers Liability policy and show you proof of such.
Courts have not agreed in all jurisdictions on whether mental anguish or emotional distress is considered “bodily injury”. In some jurisdictions, there is clear precedent that is covered under the definition, but in some it is not.
Most cases settle outside of court anyway and the plaintiff takes a sum from the insurance company, but if your jurisdiction does not allow mental distress as bodily injury, this may be a legitimate coverage concern. If all else is equal, a policy that specifically includes mental anguish is preferable.
Business Auto Policies, clearly, don’t protect you from every type of exposure your business may face. As a result, there are other types of insurance designed to meet your entire needs.
Here are a few:
- Commercial General Liability
- Commercial Property
- Business Owners Policy
- Professional Liability
- Employment Practices Liability
- Directors & Officers Liability
- Fiduciary Liability
- Business Auto Liability
- Workers Compensation
- Cyber Insurance
- Flood Insurance
- Commercial Umbrella
- Surety Bonds
>> LEARN ABOUT OTHER COMMERCIAL INSURANCE SOLUTIONS