How Does Commercial Auto Insurance work in the Capital District of NY
As your local insurance professionals, we are often asked about commercial auto insurance vs personal auto insurance. How does it work, How much more expensive is it going to be, What is the difference anyway, Is it tax deductible, and of course the most common, Do I really need commercial auto insurance?
To start off simply, Commercial auto insurance works just the same as personal auto insurance, however it is going to cover your business in the time of a loss. If you're a small business owner and you use your personal vehicle for business purposes, you may want to give us a call before you take your next trip because your personal auto insurance may not see things the way you do. You may think that your vehicle is covered when you take it to job sites or while transporting goods or tools from one location to another, but your personal auto insurance doesn't agree. The last thing a small business owner needs is to lose everything they built, just because they had the wrong kind of insurance.
Another reason you may need commercial auto insurance depends on who owns and registers the vehicle. If the vehicle is owned by a business, partnership, or corporation, your vehicle will likely require commercial auto insurance rather than personal. Now, if you're a small business owner and you register your vehicle in your own name and you strictly use that vehicle for non-business related activities, you might be covered by your personal auto insurance. Contact your local Cote office and we will be glad to check on that for you.
Your vehicle may also require commercial insurance depending on what kind of vehicle it is. The weight and size are key aspects in deciding whether or not you need commercial insurance. Bigger and heavier vehicles can cause a lot more damage when involved in an accident so they will likely need specific coverages that personal insurance does not afford. Is your vehicles gross weight over 10,000 pounds, do you have permanent equipment installed such as ladder racks, toolboxes, or shelves, is your vehicle a dump or tow truck, and the big one, is your vehicle equipped for snowplowing? If your vehicle falls into any of those categories, you'll likely need commercial auto insurance. Yes, even snow plowing, but only if you are plowing as a business. Of course, it is up to your personal auto insurance company to make the final determination. If you're unsure if your plowing vehicle should be covered on a commercial auto policy, give us a call and we can check on that for you.
This last group of individuals who might require commercial auto insurance is by far the largest. If you deliver goods, including food delivery (pizza, Chinese, etc,) or you transport people, there is a good chance you might need commercial auto insurance. This may come as a shock to most, but yes, if you drive for Uber, or deliver for Instacart, or even deliver for your local pizza shop, your personal auto insurance will most likely cease coverage as soon as you activate the app or clock in for work. Some of these companies do have coverage that can protect you in certain situations while you are working for them, but not in all situations. With the rapid growth in these industries, personal auto insurance companies have been struggling to keep up to allow you to do these activities using your personal vehicle. A few insurance companies have released optional endorsements which do allow for extended coverage while you are transporting people for Uber, Lyft, etc, but no developments have been made as of yet for the delivery of goods and foods. Check with your insurance company to find out how they handle claims in those situations. You may need commercial auto insurance and not even know it. The best way to think about it is, am I using my vehicle to make money. If the answer is yes, contact your local Cote office for a quote on commercial auto. It may be more expensive, however, it's better to pay more to be properly covered, than to not have coverage when you need it.
Founded in 1944, Cote Insurance has offered high quality insurance to families, businesses and individuals from all walks of life. From the beginning when Windsor Cote started from his kitchen, our focus has been on providing unparalleled customer service across Upstate New York. It doesn't matter if you have a few blemishes or a totally clean driving record, Cote Insurance is here to make sure you find the right coverage at the right price for Auto, Motorcycle, Rv, Home or Business insurance.
Call us today for a Commercial auto insurance quote at 1-888-804-3278 !