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Uber and Lyft Car Insurance

Discussion in 'Insurance' started by Uber & Lyft Insurance, Feb 9, 2016.

  1. Uber & Lyft Insurance

    Uber & Lyft Insurance New Member Staff Member

    Most new drivers may not understand the huge amount of risk they are assuming because no one makes any effort to tell them. Read on and find out how to best protect yourself including what Uber, Lyft, and other app-based Transportation Network Companies (TNCs) neglected to tell you and what information is publicly available.

    I am going to focus on the United States. Other countries have different, although similar laws. I am assuming that you already understand how automobile insurance protects you, your vehicle, your passengers, and other people/property that may be involved in an accident. Automobile insurance is also required by law in every state, although the requirements differ from state-to-state. TNCs require proof of insurance before they'll let you drive.

    Insufficient Auto Insurance that Uber, Lyft, and other TNCs provide

    TNCs are required by law in many states to provide insurance for drivers and passengers while online. Similar coverage for UberEats. Find out the specifics of each TNC that you drive for in your state. In general, there are 4 phases or periods defined in the image below.

    0: When Offline or the App is not running.
    1: Online, Waiting for a request/ping
    2: Driving to pickup
    3: Driving to destination with passenger. Ends at drop-off.


    Note: Terrible reputations of insurance companies used by TNCs and gaps in coverage:

    Period 1: Minimum Liability, No Collision, No Comprehensive, No UM/UMI.
    Period 2 & 3: $1,000 deductible higher than chosen by most drivers. Lyft's is $2,500.
    Periods 1,2,3: No towing. No rental reimbursement, or other "extras".

    Danger/Risk for You

    Most new drivers continue using their current personal insurance policy. This often is their first major mistake. A few new drivers, who previously drove taxis and already have more expensive commercial insurance, are much better off.

    Most auto insurance companies do not allow policy holders to work for any TNC, even part time. These insurance companies may immediately cancel your policy for this reason. If they even suspect you work for a TNC then they may immediately require proof that you do not. They may also deny a claim for this reason, leaving you to bear the entire cost.

    The best course of action is to first determine the policy of your current insurer indirectly by contacting an independent insurance specializing in rideshare. If your current insurer does not allow rideshare there are several possible courses of action.
    1. Transfer to an insurer that allows you to rideshare, but provides no coverage during these times, like Liberty Mutual. You depend on coverage provide by the TNCs.
    2. Transfer to an insurer that offers a TNC rider, endorsement, or hybrid policy, at an additional cost. Find out specifics which vary from insurer to insurer and state-to-state. These generally "fill in gaps" of TNC insurance, but have maximum mileage restrictions to qualify. (Recommended - Table at bottom)
    3. Get commercial insurance. The higher cost might be justifiable if you rideshare full-time or near full-time.
    4. Insurers may not yet offer all these options in areas recently opened to TNCs. A licensed insurance agent or independent agent familiar with rideshare should know the state-mandated minimum coverage.
    Compare Prices

    You owe it to yourself to call multiple insurers. Insurance payments may be your biggest expense after gas. There can be a huge price difference between insurers, based on where you live (there may be a 50% price difference in an adjacent town) and the amount of coverage provided. Make them explain until you understand the differences.

    Procedure after an Accident
    1. Do not move either car unless they are in a dangerous location.
    2. If anyone (pedestrian or passenger in any vehicle) is injured then call 911 for an ambulance immediately.
    3. If there are any witnesses then get their names, phone #s, or other contact information.
    4. Call a cop to the scene. Get cop's name, badge #, and how to get a copy of the police report. Cop will not know and generally not care if you are driving for a TNC at the time of the accident unless you (or passengers) mention it, they see the application running on your phone, or trade-dress on your car.
    5. Your insurer will care, but generally rely on the honesty of the policyholder to report accurately. Knowingly lying is fraud. In rare circumstances, your insurer may demand a letter from Uber that you are not working for them.
    6. Exchange information with other driver(s) including: name, address, phone or email, insurer, policy#
    7. Arrange for a tow, if necessary. The cop may provide assistance at a cost if you have no other option.
    8. While at the scene. Use the driver-App to report the accident and take pictures of damage.
    9. If you have passengers then make sure they can get to their original destination safely.
    If Insurer Denies Your Claim
    A look at your legal options.

    If you made the claim yourself and the insurer denied the claim, you need to think about retaining a lawyer. There is nothing further that you can say to the adjuster. Most likely, the insurer denied your claim for one of two major reasons: 1) the adjuster truly believes that your claim has no merit, or 2) the insurer simply denied your claim in the hopes that you will give up.

    If the adjuster believes that your claim has no merit, then no amount of talking to him/her is going to change the situation; the only thing that a lawyer can do is take your case out of the insurance pipeline and file a car accident lawsuit.

    But sometimes adjusters will deny claims even though they know that the claim does have some merit. It should not be surprising to know that an insurer might sometimes deny a claim simply as a financial move. An insurance company is in business to make money for its stockholders, not for the benefit of people who file claims against it. An insurer looks at each claim from a profit and loss and risk perspective. If an insurer believes that denying a claim is the best financial move for it at that time, it will deny the claim. Insurers know that there is a certain percentage of people with otherwise valid claims who will not pursue the claim (i.e., hire a lawyer) if the claim is denied.

    Either way, the reason that the insurer denied your claim is not significant to you. But if the insurer denied your claim just to push you around, it is possible that it will look more seriously at your claim if you are now represented by a lawyer.

    Insurer Denies Your Attorney’s Claim
    If you have a lawyer who put together a demand letter and sent it off to the insurer, and the insurer denied your lawyer’s claim, now your only choice is to give up or file a lawsuit.

    You might think, “How dare they deny my claim! We should file a lawsuit immediately.” But you should be aware that insurance companies treat claims from lawyers with far more respect than they treat claims from unrepresented persons. They will not flatly deny claims from qualified lawyers for no good reason. They usually will make some offer, however low.

    So, when lawyers have a claim summarily denied, they are going to think very hard about whether they have missed something. They will ask the adjuster why the claim was denied. They will try to prod the adjuster to disclose the evidence that the adjuster used to deny the claim. Unfortunately, adjusters rarely disclose the evidence against the plaintiff before the lawsuit, just like plaintiff’s lawyers rarely disclose their evidence before they have to.

    If the insurer denies your lawyer’s claim, you can expect that your lawyer is going to ask you to come into the office and sit down for a brutally honest talk. Most lawyers are willing to file suit on tough cases, but they don’t want to waste their time with a suit that has no chance of succeeding. They will want to review all of the evidence with you so that you can understand the odds against you.

    If your lawyer is prepared to go forward with your case, he/she will usually send the insurer notice that he/she intends to file a claim under your state’s Consumer Protection Act or Unfair Settlement Practices Act, if your state has such an act. That will give you additional leverage later on in the case, if it is determined that the insurer in fact denied your claim for no good reason.

    Table of Insurers (Obsolete, but somewhere to start)


    This post provided by

    Disclaimer: I do not receive any kind of compensation and I am not associated with any of the companies (other then my TNCs and my own insurer) mentioned above.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 17, 2017
  2. Uber & Lyft Insurance

    Uber & Lyft Insurance New Member Staff Member

    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 6, 2017
    JimGreen, SFAgentKyle and LAuberX like this.
  3. Scottie Boy

    Scottie Boy New Member Sponsor

    Good stuff
  4. GGDaddy

    GGDaddy Well-Known Member

    Washington, DC
    Great info, thank you!

    USAA appears to be a carrier in most states, but are not listed in Virginia. Does that mean they don't offer TNC coverage here for Period 1?
    Abigail David likes this.
  5. Uber & Lyft Insurance

    Uber & Lyft Insurance New Member Staff Member

    Great Question! Unfortunately, USAA does not carry TNC coverage in Virginia at this time. Currently Geico and Allstate have TNC coverage in Virginia.
    USAA publishes a number to call to verify coverage by state. That number can be found in this article: https://communities.usaa.com/t5/USAA-News/Insight-Ridesharing-Requires-Coverage/ba-p/61343

  6. GGDaddy

    GGDaddy Well-Known Member

    Washington, DC
    Thanks very much for the info!
  7. Michael - Cleveland

    Michael - Cleveland Moderator Moderator

    Great Lakes
    Effective 23 March 2016, in Ohio, by law, the TNC is not permitted to require a driver's personal auto policy to first deny a claim.

    Sec. 3938.02.
    (A)(1) Each transportation network company driver shall be covered by a primary automobile insurance policy that recognizes that the driver is a transportation network company driver or otherwise uses a vehicle to transport passengers for compensation and provides coverage during both of the following periods of time:

    (a) While the driver is logged on to the transportation network company's digital network;
    (b) While the driver is engaged in transportation network company services.

    (2) The primary automobile insurance policy required by division (A)(1) of this section shall meet the following coverage requirements:

    (a) While a transportation network company driver is logged on to the transportation network company's digital network and is available to receive transportation requests but is not engaged in transportation network company services, primary automobile insurance shall be maintained in the following amounts:

    (i) At least fifty thousand dollars because of bodily injury to or death of one person in any one accident;
    (ii) At least one hundred thousand dollars because of bodily injury or death of two or more persons in any one accident;
    (iii) At least twenty-five thousand dollars because of injury to property of others in any one accident.

    . . .

    (3) The insurance required by divisions (A)(1) and (2) of this section may be satisfied by either of the following or a combination of the following:

    (a) An automobile insurance policy that is maintained by the transportation network company driver ;
    (b) An automobile insurance policy that is maintained by the transportation network company .

    (1) If personal automobile insurance maintained by a transportation network company driver does not provide liability coverage in the amounts required by division (A)(2) of this section, insurance maintained by the transportation network company shall provide the required coverage, beginning with the first dollar of the claim and shall have the duty to defend the claim.

    (2) An automobile insurance policy maintained by a transportation network company in accordance with this section shall not require the driver's personal automobile insurer or policy to first deny a claim before providing coverage.
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2016
    Jamie Coalsten likes this.
  8. RamzFanz

    RamzFanz Well-Known Member

    Saint Louis
    This is great info. It's nice to see the myths cleared up.

    However, I do see a problem with this wording:

    It does replace your state policy while in periods 2 and 3. Not that your personal policy isn't still required by the state, but for filing purposes, the TNC insurance is the primary while a personal policy is almost certainly of no value at all. Also, may is not an accurate operative word. Will or is intended to seems more accurate. I know of no incident where they failed to pay exactly as described. Do you? It seems to imply that they may not pay which is not a reasonable description from all that I've read. They seem to pay in full every time and quickly. They are also required to live up to their published coverages by state laws, are they not?
    Jamie Coalsten likes this.
  9. Michael - Cleveland

    Michael - Cleveland Moderator Moderator

    Great Lakes
    I think the word may was used because the law as written it in Ohio doesn't require one or the other to provide coverage, it requires either or both. In other words, if your personal policy covers commercial use the PNC is not required to cover you.
  10. @earth_to_jen

    @earth_to_jen Member

    The massive blackhole insurance gap in Florida no one mentions is "period zero" when driver is off duty or turned app off. Besides the app on gap of no PIP and possibly no collision on your car. No insurer in Florida covers an Uber driver On duty or off duty. Its cat and mouse. They keep collecting your premiums,but in a big loss crash with a four door car all they need to do is subpeona Uber, your bank starements etc. And your off duty goose is cooked. There is a Joint Insurance Underwriters Association FAJUA that is mandated by FLOIR to insure Uber drivers(and other risk category groups) for personal driving.
    circle1 likes this.
  11. Lion88

    Lion88 New Member

    Commercial car insurance policy will help you to defend the investment you have made in your vehicles and your employees.
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 16, 2016
    Jamie Coalsten likes this.
  12. Wheelman

    Wheelman Active Member

    Thanks to the OP for posting this. Glad to see the driver universe starting to wake up. I fear however that the vast preponderance of drivers are still out there blissfully risking all on a personal insurance policy. They are committing insurance fraud and will rightfully be left high and dry (and very exposed) in the event of an incident.

    I got Erie business coverage in Indiana and it was very reasonable, about a 40% premium over personal coverage.
    Mypetshort likes this.
  13. 7H3LaughingMan

    7H3LaughingMan New Member

    You might need to update this since it is is $1,000,000 for death, bodily injury, and property damage for each incident during Period 2 & Period 3. I can't include the link since I have received a like yet.

    Also had some questions, took a look at the Uber/Lyft Insurance Documents. Do they cover Period 1, Period 2, & Period 3 for Texas?
  14. mjk1210

    mjk1210 New Member

    Bolingbrook, IL
    Illinois now has Geico commercial as an option for coverage. I just did a quote and signed up today. Wasn't willing to risk driving until I got that taken care of. Best part is that I didn't have to put all my autos and home policy with them. They don't offer a loan payoff option so I didn't want to switch my wife's newer car and Erie required everything or nothing. My uber car is a 2006 accord so most of the depreciation has occurred already even though I have a loan I won't lose as much if something happens. Progressive simply doesn't offer ride-sharing coverage in IL yet so Accord is with Geico and other cars and home still with progressive. Drive save out there
  15. Healthygal

    Healthygal New Member

    Who is covering insurance like this in the state of Florida, specifically Brevard County?
    SWFLRideshare and Bedeeda like this.
  16. UberDriver512

    UberDriver512 Active Member

    Austin, TX
    OK I have a question here. I spoke to a Texas insurance broker. She said that my personal auto insurance may not cover me when I drive, but that Progressive just started writing personal auto insurance with a "ridesharing" endorsement. My insurance carrier is not listed on this thread. I called them and they said they would specifically exclude Uber/Lyft and the like.

    I called Progressive and they said that they can write a personal insurance policy with a ridesharing endorsement, of course it will cost more money and I would have to agree to install their Snapshot device in my car as well.

    I looked at my current insurance and it meets the new 2016 Texas insurance requirements for increased insurance coverage when driving for Uber. I have reviewed this thread, and from what it appears, even though my current insurance will deny coverage, Uber's insurance assumes coverage when the app is turned on and I am logged in as a driver (regardless of assignment, or no assignment).

    So, assuming my current insurance company will deny coverage, and Uber's picks up where mine leaves off, am I ok currently?

    What does the Progressive Insurance "ridesharing" endorsement add on? How much more would it cost versus getting a personal policy with the same car and same coverage through Progressive but without the ridesharing endorsement?

    Trying to see what the raw cost difference is, and what their endorsement would actually cover. I don't see the need to buy Progressive's Insurance with the ridesharing endorsement if (1) it is not needed and (2) it is expensive.
  17. uberboise

    uberboise Member

  18. socal_uberx

    socal_uberx Member

    San Diego
    I just grabbed a full TNC (both LYFT & UBER) policy in CA (after GEICO being alerted to the fact that I'd been scamming for 13 months). premium doubled w/ State Farm from $50 to $100, not too costly considering the flipside of being eff'd b/c I never told GEICO...
    ResIpsaUber and SFAgentKyle like this.
  19. call-a-cab

    call-a-cab New Member

    Albquerque, NM
    An Uber/Lyft car can only operate maybe 84 hours, max, yet Farmers and Progressive charge an Uber driver the same rate as a Fleet Taxi, $600 - $700 per month. It doesn't take a complex actuarial calculator to see that an Uber car has 1/2 the risk of a Fleet Taxi . . . so, if a $300/month commercial policy was offered, we wouldn't have to worry about gaps and exclusions in any of the states.
    What say you to that?
  20. socal_uberx

    socal_uberx Member

    San Diego
    1/2 the cost, not so much my dude. barrier to entry is zero so any unpredictable variable (from an INS. company POV) enters the statistical group @ any point along the timeline. the actuarial tables aren't filled w/ enough data b/c 99% of us are lying to our INS. provider to save $$$ & flout rules. until there's a state by state legislative mandate on this or insurers ask you to sign an affidavit confirming "you're NOT a rideshare driver", prices will vary wildly since regulation is low A/F.
    SFAgentKyle likes this.

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