Business owners often ask us this question: Should I title and insure a new vehicle in my personal name or the business name? Hopefully this article helps respond to this common question.
Your personal car insurance is there to protect you as the driver of a car you use for running errands, commuting, getting your kids to activities, and the like.
A major difference between a personal auto policy and commercial auto policy
But a personal auto policy is not designed to provide enough protection if you're a business owner. That is because the risks you face conducting business are different and are greater. One such example is if an employee has an accident in her own vehicle while running a business errand, you could be sued. You can be sued for bodily injury if someone is hurt or for property damage if it's even a scratch.
If all you have is personal auto coverage, the damage could be all on you personally without the response of an insurance policy because personal auto policies generally do not cover business use. The following example and driving test comes from our trusted partner, The Hartford.
AN EXAMPLE. Consider Bill, the owner of a floral delivery business, who simply wanted to treat his employees to lunch during the hectic Valentine’s Day rush. Busy with customers, Bill asked his assistant to pick up the lunch order. En route, she had a fender bender at a busy intersection that damaged her personal car and the other driver’s vehicle. Worse, the other driver suffered a neck injury. It turned out to be a very expensive lunch: Bill was sued. With the right coverage selections on his business auto policy, this might not have been such an expense.
Take this Five-Question Driving Test
- Do you have vehicles that are registered in your business name?
- Do your employees drive the vehicles registered in your business name?
- Do your employees drive their own vehicles as a function of the day to day business operations?
- Does your business own a larger truck with a GVW greater than 10 tons?
- Do you have permanently attached equipment on your business vehicle used for day to day business operations?
If you answer 'yes" to any of them, you may need business auto coverage.
Here at Elliot Whittier Insurance, Business insurance is what we do. We can help navigate the best insurance carriers, the best coverage, and the best rates available for your company. We can help explain some of the "extra" coverages available that may be of particular interest to you such as:
- Loan Lease Gap Protection for commercial vehicles
- Electronic Equipment Coverage
- Fender Bender Forgiveness for commercial vehicles
- Accident Forgiveness for commercial vehicles
- Hired Auto Physical Damage Coverage
How to get a quote for a Commercial Auto Policy
Contact us today with any questions on coverage, or to get a quote on your business auto insurance.