If you operate a fleet of trucks or other vehicles in your business, you need fleet auto insurance protection. The basic insurance protection will cover physical damage or liability for vehicles you own or rent. A fleet insurance protection plan also includes provisions that allow employees in your business to drive a fleet vehicle and receive coverage.
When you acquire a business auto policy (BAP), you usually have 3 coverage options –
- Business owned vehicles
- Vehicles your business leases or owns
- All vehicles, including any cars or trucks not owned or leased by your business
Protecting your fleet with commercial auto insurance will cover you, whether your fleet features big rigs or other types of vehicles, including pickup trucks, cars, and sports utility vehicles (SUVs).
Other vehicles covered include dump trucks, box trucks, bucket trucks, catering trucks, and refrigerated trucks. Use the insurance for limousines, utility vans, flatbeds, or vehicles outfitted with work or construction equipment.
The amount you pay in premiums is based on the mileage driven, the amount of use, where the vehicles are driven, how the vehicles are used, and the size of the fleet.
So, how many trucks or cars make up a fleet?
The answer will vary, depending on the fleet insurance company. Some fleet insurers require at least 5 vehicles to insure a “fleet.” Others are more lenient and will protect as few as two cars or trucks under the same coverage.
The fleet coverage you choose will offer enough collision and liability protection to meet the insurance requirements for your state.
Commercial fleet insurance features master policies that provide the required liability. This type of plan includes:
- Bodily injury
- Property damage
- Coverages that reimburse third parties injured in an accident involving a fleet car
- Damages for third-party property damage
After choosing the required coverage, you can include other options, such as:
- Increased liability
- Medical payments insurance
- Uninsured motorist’s insurance
- Underinsured motorist’s insurance
- Roadside assistance
- Comprehensive insurance to cover theft, vandalism, and other truck or car damages
- Personal insurance protection (PIP) – covering bodily injury for no-fault insurance claims
Employees who drive your fleet vehicles are covered in case a third-party bodily injury claim is filed or property damage ensues while driving your business vehicle. Usually, the owner limits are written and defined as a combined single limit (CSL) policy.
When one of your fleet vehicles is involved in a mishap and needs repair, you can use physical damage insurance to cover:
- Collision repairs or replacement of a fleet vehicle (collision insurance)
- Damages resulting from a fire, vandalism, theft, or other covered perils (comprehensive insurance)
If your business does indeed need a fleet of vehicles, commercial coverage can cover all types of vehicles and you can adapt the plan to your business’s specific needs. You can even obtain the coverage with a $1,000 deductible. This will lower your monthly premiums. Just make sure you can cover the deductible if a vehicle happens to get damaged or you need to file an injury claim.
You will need liability and collision coverage to meet your state’s insurance requirements. Next, you will need to consider what you may require in comprehensive coverage (physical damage) and medical payments insurance.
Again, commercial fleet insurance extends to the vehicles you rent, own, or borrow and factors in the employees who use fleet vehicles for business. Medical payments coverage is yet another consideration. See how you are covered and see where you can save. Always compare the rates of at least 3 insurance companies before you decide on a policy.
Review your business auto policy (BAP) carefully to ensure you have the needed coverage. While liability insurance and collision insurance come with rental agreements, you normally need more insurance than what you receive through a fleet rental agency.
Protecting your vehicle fleet is important. Talk to an insurance agent about coverage. Without the protection, you can easily wipe out your business overnight.