Commercial Auto Insurance
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Commercial Auto Insurance Information
Southern Louisiana is one of the Bayou State’s economic hubs due to its many ports and connections to the oil & petroleum industry. A huge amount of interstate commerce takes place in the area, and a lot of drivers pass through the area on business every day. Business vehicles and their drivers need the right commercial auto insurance to back them up.
Commercial auto insurance is specialized vehicle coverage for business-owned or -operated vehicles. It comes in multiple shapes and sizes. DJW Insurance Agency offers multiple policy options that businesses can tailor to their needs. Contact us at (800) 820-0004 or request your free quote online now.
Common Commercial Auto Insurance Questions
The purpose of commercial auto insurance is to help a business protect itself from the costs of wrecks and other damaging events involving a vehicle it owns, or one operating under its authority. Both sole proprietors and multi-employee businesses can benefit from commercial auto coverage. Whether you own a small business or run a major company, you might drive as part of your regular operations. You therefore can benefit from this coverage.
Commercial vehicles could be any make or model, and you can usually insure multiple vehicles and drivers under one policy. You might need a commercial auto policy if:
- The business itself is the owner of the vehicle(s).
- Employees use their personal vehicle in the course of work. Commuters do not count, however.
- You hire or rent vehicles for business purposes, or work for a rideshare like Uber or Lyft.
- Employees drive company-owned vehicles both in their off hours.
- You own a large vehicle personally, but its weight qualifies it as a commercial vehicle.
Commercial auto insurance offers numerous types of coverage, including:
- Bodily Injury Liability Insurance: Coverage pays for third-party medical bills when an insured driver is at fault for an accident that harms someone who was not a passenger in the vehicle.
- Property Damage Liability Insurance: If a business driver’s at-fault accident damages other peoples’ property, then this coverage can pay for costs like their vehicle repairs.
- Collision Insurance: Coverage will pay for damage to a commercial vehicle sustained in a wreck.
- Comprehensive Damage Insurance: If commercial vehicles sustain damage from hazards like fires, theft, vandalism or severe weather, then this coverage can pay for the repairs.
- Uninsured Motorist Coverage: An accident might not be your fault, but the at-fault party might lack liability insurance. Your own policy can pay for your damage using this coverage.
- Medical Payments Coverage: Coverage can pay for the injury costs that employee drivers or passengers in the vehicle sustains.
- Hired/Non-Owned Auto Liability Insurance: If an employee drives their personal vehicle for business, then coverage can extend your policy's liability coverage to these drivers.
Please note, specialty vehicles often need more unique coverage than the average company car. So, if you operate vehicles like dump trucks or haul hazardous materials, your agent will work with you to find the policy that best applies to these vehicles.
To choose the right coverage, you’ll have to consider several factors.
- State and federal law require commercial drivers to have liability insurance. Your requirements will vary based on vehicle weight, how you use it and what you transport. Policyholders can also increase their overall liability coverage to minimize losses from high-value claims or lawsuits.
- If you total your car, most collision/comprehensive policies will pay the vehicle’s cash value at the time of the accident. This is the car’s depreciated, used value. So, you might not recoup the full cost of the lost car. However, some policies provide replacement cost coverage, or you might be able to buy gap insurance, which can help you pay off the value of a vehicle loan.
- Collision & comprehensive coverage will include deductibles. Insurers subtract the deductible cost from your final claim settlement. This is a cost you must pay out of pocket, so always choose a deductible you can afford.
- To insure cargo and equipment in a commercial vehicle, you might need coverage called inland marine insurance. You must buy this coverage separately from a commercial auto policy.
A general estimate places most commercial auto policy costs between $900 - $1,200 per year. However, given the wide range of commercial vehicles and their uses, insurance prices can vary considerably. Those who face more cost risks are those who generally must pay more.
Your insurer will look at multiple risk factors to help them determine your premiums. These might be the types of vehicles you insure, your location, how many drivers you insure and the history of claims on your auto policies. Your agent can help you find the policies that offer you the best affordability for the necessary coverage.
If you work for Uber, Lyft or another rideshare, then you might not have enough coverage from your personal car insurance alone. However, you can purchase a rideshare policy from many insurers, which offers coverage that will apply appropriately to your vehicle and liabilities. You can often add coverage as an endorsement to your existing personal auto policy, or you can buy a separate policy.