Do I need commercial auto insurance?
If you own a business or have a fleet of vehicles, you may already have commercial auto insurance. If you are an individual or small business owner, the need for commercial auto insurance may be not be as clear.
If you answer yes to the following questions, you may need commercial auto insurance.
- Is your car in the business name, and used mainly for business purposes?
- Do you use your car to deliver goods or merchandise, transport your equipment or tools, or use your car as a taxi service?
- Are your employees using their personal vehicles for you business?
- Do you have equipment installed on your car, van or truck such as ladder racks or other permanently attached equipment?
- Does your car weigh more than 4,600 kilograms?
Can I use my car for business on my personal auto insurance policy?
There are times when the insurance company will allow you to use your car for business purposes on a personal auto insurance policy. Here are some examples of business uses that may be acceptable under a personal auto insurance policy.
- You are a real estate agent who uses their vehicle to visit with customers.
- You are contracted by a government office or utility such as the post office or hydro and use your vehicle to deliver mail to community boxes or read metres.
- Your car is sometimes used to pick up supplies for your business.
- You use your car for a ride sharing service.
Is there a difference between a personal and commercial auto insurance policy?
There is no real difference between the coverage on a commercial auto insurance policy and the coverage on a personal auto insurance policy because both use the Ontario Automobile Insurance Policy (O.A.P. 1), Application and Endorsement Forms. (http://www.fsco.gov.on.ca/en/auto/forms/pages/oap1_forms.aspx). Furthermore, both policies cover third party liability, accident benefits, uninsured/underinsured motorists, collision and comprehensive coverage.
Talk to your insurance broker
Talk to your insurance broker to make sure that the use is allowed by the insurance company. There may be an additional charge or limitations placed on your policy. For example, your car may be used for ride sharing no more than 20 hours per week. Most noteworthy is if your insurance company does not know how you are using your car, they may cancel your policy or not pay a claim.
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