Thursday, September 10, 2015

Uber vs Insurance: Updated

It's been a while since we looked at how insurers are dealing with their insureds who also drive for Uber. As we noted this past Spring, private passenger auto polices don't typically cover business-related risks, and full-blown business auto coverage can get (as the kids say) spendy.

Believe it or not, though, Erie Insurance has addressed this seeming paradox head-on (so to speak) and come up with an effective - and unique - solution:

"The new car insurance coverage solves a longstanding problem for drivers in the ridesharing economy by eliminating confusion over what's covered and when. With ERIE's new coverage, the driver has insurance coverage during every part of the trip—before, during and after the hired ride."

There are really several components to the Uber transaction: the driver signs up to be a driver (but hasn't yet agreed to any particular fare). So, no problem because it's all just theoretical at this point. But then he gets a "call." Assuming he agrees to take that fare, then he's entered into a contract, and the car is now a business. Ruh ro. At this point, and while the passenger is actually in the vehicle, it's business use and likely excluded.

Of course, once the fare's dropped off, our examplar is back to private use, no problem.

What Erie's done is streamline this so that their insured has coverage at all three stages. And just how do they accomplish this Herculean feat?

Watch and learn:

Meanwhile, Uber itself has its own insurance battle going on.

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