With roughly 30,800 fatal crashes per year just in the United States, having auto insurance is vital for a company with vehicles. The question a lot of business owners have is whether or not they also need commercial vehicle insurance. Learning more about commercial vehicle insurance can help you decide whether or not your personal liability policy is enough coverage to protect your business.
When in Doubt Commercial Auto Insurance is Best
Generally, a commercial auto insurance policy is needed if a company has vehicles that are used directly for tasks related to the operation and responsibility of the business. Basically, this means if an employees need a vehicle in order to do his or her job, commercial vehicle insurance is necessary. Unfortunately, the situation surrounding your business and vehicles may not be that black and white.
Who Owns and Operates the Vehicles Being Driven?
If the vehicles are owned by the business, a commercial auto policy is necessary. This is because the company is liable any time an employee is operating the vehicle for work-related tasks. This is true even if the employee does something wrong while driving. If you are the only one operating the vehicle on behalf of your business, personal auto insurance will suffice.
What Qualifies as a Business Vehicle?
A vehicle in the United States is categorized as a commercial vehicle if it is registered to a company. Vehicles equipped to transport more than 15 passengers are also considered commercial vehicles. If the vehicle exceeds a certain class or weight, it can be considered a commercial vehicle. For example, a vehicle with a weight rating of more than 26,001 pounds is always categorized as a business vehicle.
What Exactly Does This Type of Insurance Cover?
A commercial insurance policy is not that different in terms of what it covers when compared to a personal policy. The only difference is that it usually has higher limits than a personal policy would. There are also a lot of add-ons for commercial insurance not available for a personal policy such as coverage for your employees, your equipment, your products, and your business assets. It is in your best interest to sit down with an auto insurance agent and let him or her look at what kind of business you are in and help you choose an appropriate commercial plan to protect your entire business and its employees.
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