Auto Insurance for Businesses – What Is It? Is it Really Necessary?

There are numerous moving parts involved in running a business.

Your commercial vehicle is one of those parts that is actually moving (s).

Without commercial vehicles, your business would face serious roadblocks or even cease to exist. This is true whether you use commercial vehicles only occasionally or all day, every day. As a result, you must insure these vehicles and treat them as such.

We’re here to help! Every year, Berry Insurance has helped thousands of companies (from all sectors and sizes) get the commercial insurance coverage they need by customizing policies for each one.

Whatever the size of your company’s fleet, we’re here to answer any questions you have about commercial auto insurance.

Time to get started, shall we?

Exactly what is commercial auto insurance?
If you’ve ever had a personal auto insurance policy, you’ll recognize how commercial auto insurance works. Although the coverages protect your business vehicles and their associated liabilities, not your personal vehicles.

Customized business auto policies can include the coverages you need to protect your company in the event of an accident involving you or your employees while on the road.

What is covered by commercial vehicle insurance??
Many vehicle-related incidents are covered by business auto insurance, but there are some limitations, exclusions, and optional coverages that you should be aware of before you start driving.

What’s covered:
Your company is responsible for any injuries or damages caused by its vehicles.
Injuries to your company’s fleet vehicle
The cost of treatment
Protection in the event of a hit-and-run
If you’re hit by an uninsured motorist, you’re covered.
Auto rental companies’ legal responsibility for accidents involving their own vehicles (optional)
liability for accidents resulting from your employees driving their own cars to work for your company (optional)
Replacement of the glass or the windshield
I’m driving for my own amusement (damage only)
What isn’t included in this article:
In your car, whether it’s for business or personal use.
Equipment that is portable
An act of intentional harm to another person or property.
Resolved issues (the work you have completed)
Towing a vehicle (optional)
Receipts for rented properties (Optional)
Pollution
Personal injury protection for automobiles (optional for business owners)
I’m driving for my own amusement (liability only)
Do I need commercial vehicle insurance?
Auto insurance for businesses is required when vehicles are registered in the business name. However, that vehicle can be any one of several different types of vehicles.

Insurance for a vehicle that is registered in the name of an individual but is used for business purposes may still be required (your insurance agent can help you determine that).

A commercial auto policy is needed even if you don’t own any vehicles! A business auto policy is required if you rent or borrow any vehicles for business purposes, such as a car for a business trip.

It’s my job to determine how much commercial vehicle insurance I need.
As each business is so distinct, it requires a policy that is tailored to its specific features and risks.

We can’t give you an accurate estimate of how much commercial vehicle you’ll need unless we know more about your business. Even so, we’d like to point out that you may need more than you think.

It is common for commercial auto insurance policies to cost up to $1,000,000. Unfortunately, given the litigious nature of today’s society and the rising costs of automobiles and auto repairs, this may not be enough.

Commercial umbrella insurance is frequently purchased by business owners as a safeguard against large claims that exceed the policy limits.

Besides my business, do I also require personal auto insurance?
Even personal vehicles are registered in the name of the business for some business owners.

If this is the case for you, your personal vehicles will not be fully covered by your commercial auto policy, and you will need a separate policy to cover them.

Personal liability is not covered under a commercial auto policy when the vehicle is being used for personal purposes by a business owner or employee.

A personal non-owner auto policy would be required if the car was being used for personal purposes by an employee, or the company could add a coverage called “Driver Other Car” to the commercial vehicle in order to provide named individuals with personal auto liability coverage.

What is the cost of commercial vehicle insurance?
If we could, we’d give you a simple answer, but unfortunately, that isn’t possible for us to do.

Although we have nothing to hide, commercial auto insurance is complicated and can vary significantly in cost depending on a number of factors including the number of vehicles owned by the company, their cost, the location in which they are garaged, the operations of the business, coverage inclusions and limits, and the history of the company’s employees.

Policy premiums can range from $1,500 for a private car to $40,000 for a large company with a fleet of vehicles.

As a result of the additional risks your business assumes by using your vehicles to transport goods or services, commercial auto insurance is typically more expensive than personal auto insurance policies. When it comes to the protection of your business and your employees, a commercial auto policy provides much higher limits of coverage.

When I need to file a business auto claim, what’s the next step?
Don’t freak out if you or a member of your staff has been involved in a car accident or suffered vehicle damage. We’re here to help.

Following an accident, you’ll want to collect information about the accident, the people and vehicles involved, photos of damage and license plates, a police report, the crash report and the insurance policy numbers for each person involved.

This information should be given to your insurance agent so that he or she can assist you in the claims process by notifying your insurance company and arranging for an adjuster to evaluate your claim and render a decision.

Read What Happens After a Car Accident for more information (MA Auto Insurance Claims Process and Timelines)

Ensure that your vehicles are still in use
Your company’s vehicles play an important role in keeping things moving quickly.

What would happen to your business if an employee or a vehicle were injured or killed? Worse yet, what if your insurance didn’t cover the damage to that vehicle, leaving you to foot the bill?

Your company’s vehicles and employees will be safe from damage and lawsuits if you have a comprehensive business auto policy in place.

And if you need a commercial auto policy, you may also need a full business insurance policy to protect your company’s assets..