Many Californians are using side-hustles to make ends meet, especially in our gig economy. While you might have considered putting your car to work by being a ride-hailing driver, it’s important to understand one thing:
How are you covered for insurance while working as a ride-hailing driver?
Understanding the separate limits of insurance
Nobody plans to get into an accident. This is especially true when you are using your car as income. That’s why it’s important to understand how to proceed if you are injured in an accident while driving for Uber or Lyft.
A 2015 law requires Uber and Lyft to cover California drivers for distinct periods of a trip. These include when you turn the application on, when you pick up a passenger and until you drop them off.
Because of the different levels of risk, insurance companies offer different coverage levels. Injury and damage coverage change depending on the portion of your trip.
They look like this:
Period 1: This is when you initially open the Lyft or Uber app and are looking for passengers. If you are in an accident while looking for passengers, you are covered for up to $50,000 per person in injuries. The companies also offer $200,000 in excess liability to cover any additional costs.
Period 2: When you have picked up a passenger, you are now covered up to $1 million per accident. This is total injury and damage liability split between however many people are involved in the accident and their injuries.
Period 3: Ends when you drop a passenger off (taking you back to Period 1). The coverage is the same as Period 2. Both Period 2 and 3 also have a comprehensive collision policy for vehicle damage as well.
Dealing with unexpected injuries
If you are a Lyft or Uber driver and get into a car accident, it’s important to take care of your injuries as soon as possible. You need to make sure you can prove you using the app when the accident occurred. Otherwise, you will not qualify for coverage.
A knowledgeable attorney can help guide you through the complex claims process and give you the best chance of covering any resulting injuries.