In today’s business market where people frequently work all day at their 9-5, then moonlight for several hours more just to make ends meet, it is important to keep an eye on the kind of insurance that you have on your vehicle. This is especially important if you are using your car as an after-hours taxi through Uber or an Uber-clone, or even if you use it to deliver pizza or run messages.
Insurance and Vehicle Use Regulations
While overall regulations might vary from place to place, if you accept money for the use of your vehicle, you need a different kind of coverage from that used if only you and your family ride in it. From commuter ride sharing to deliveries of merchandise for your home business, a standard family policy just is not going to work. Aside from all other considerations, some insurance companies simply will not pay out if you have not declared all the ways that your vehicle might be used. That goes not only for standard uninsured motorist or collision cover but also for your breakdown cover.
Extras That You Might Need
Let’s say that your home business is very small. It is almost a hobby, really. You create fancy baked goods on the weekend and sell them to people who are having a small wedding, a birthday party or similar event. You find baking relaxing. Your business is sporadic, relying mostly on word-of-mouth advertising, and it certainly isn’t your main income.
You create a batch of birthday cookies and have them loaded up in your vehicle. At a stoplight, it stalls out. You are now sitting by the side of the road with a backseat full of bakery cartons that need to be delivered soon. Who are you going to call? Your roadside service, of course. But when they arrive, the mechanic on board isn’t very hopeful. They can tow your car, but the cookies are a problem. They aren’t covered by your breakdown policy, so even with transportation assistance for you, they might not make it to their destination.
With the right kind of coverage, your van breakdown company might have a policy addendum that can have those cookies (and you) loaded up and to your destination while the towing company delivers your car to the mechanic.
Your breakdown cover gets even more complicated when you are transporting people. A flat tire, a dead battery, or a broken alternator belt can leave you and your passengers on a lonely stretch of road. You not only have yourself to worry about but your passengers as well. Standard breakdown policies might have limits on the number of people and the distance that they can be transported. Thinking ahead and having a policy that covers everyone so that no one is left walking to the nearest outpost of civilization not only keeps your people safe, it saves your reputation.
Cutting Corners Doesn’t Pay
Talk over your intended use with your breakdown cover agent and with your standard insurance agent before you reach the point that you have goods or people to transport. Not only is it the honest thing to do, it is the smart thing. Your agent or agents can advise you as to what kind of coverage you need to protect your goods, your reputation and any people or pets who might be involved. Failure to report such intended use can result in failure to collect benefits or even to have your policy canceled.
Report Intended Use Honestly
Reporting your intended use honestly not only keeps you on the right side of legal regulations but it also makes you look good in the event of an emergency.