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Why ride-share drivers need special insurance

Ever wonder who is responsible for damages when vehicles driven by ride-hailing service professionals are involved in accidents, or, conversely, ever wonder what your own insurance requirements would be, should you decide to drive for one? These days, ride-hailing services have become increasingly common across numerous cities and towns, but some drivers for these services find themselves facing unanticipated financial hardships in the aftermath of an accident.

Why? Many people who drive for ride-booking companies do not realize that they typically need to disclose the fact that they are driving for these companies to their insurers so they can purchase and maintain appropriate coverage.

Insurance considerations

Though every insurer has different requirements, the majority of today’s insurance companies have guidelines dictating that ride-hailing service drivers obtain “hybrid” insurance policies that cover both their personal driving and their driving for work. Often, auto insurers also have policies in place that allow them to stop covering you entirely if you are in an accident while working for a lift service that they never knew employed you in the first place.

While ride-hailing service drivers may, depending on circumstances, be able to secure insurance through the ride-booking service that employs them, such policies typically offer minimal coverage. Therefore, the driver may be on the hook for additional expenses, should he or she not have ride-share insurance coverage elsewhere.

A possible alternative

Ride-share insurance is not currently available in all geographic areas. Drivers who want to cover themselves in the event of accidents but who do not live in geographic areas where this type of coverage is available may want to opt for commercial insurance policies that can protect them.

If you find yourself involved in a crash with a ride-booking service vehicle, the driver should have the appropriate insurance in place to cover damages. If not, he or she may wind up financially responsible for accident-related expenses. Conversely, if you are making a living working for a ride-hailing service, make sure you have enough coverage to protect yourself in the event of a wreck.

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