What is “business use” auto insurance?

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Here's what you need to know...
  • Business or commercial auto insurance covers a vehicle that is partially or totally operated for hire or for a business-related purpose
  • Pizza delivery, ride-sharing and the transportation of goods are considered business use
  • A car that is registered to a business is a business use vehicle
  • A comparison tool can help you find affordable business use and commercial car insurance

Do you use your car for personal use, business use, or a mix of the two? How you answer this question will determine the type of insurance you need for your car, and it will affect the price of your auto insurance policy.

To get started in the process of choosing the right policy for your specific driving habits and needs, you can use a comparison tool, which will let you input various parameters and check prices.

The tool on this page is free and easy to use! Start comparing car insurance online now by entering your zip code in the box above!

Personal Use Auto Insurance

Most drivers think they are covered under their personal car insurance policy for certain business endeavors.

Therefore, it is important to understand what personal use car insurance covers, which is the standard type of policy give to most drivers unless they state they use their car in conjunction with business or transporting people or items for hire.

A personal insurance policy financially protects the driver of the vehicle if they get into an accident that is deemed to be their fault.

In general, a personal car insurance policy covers personal property damage, including damage to vehicles, objects, and homes that are a direct result of the impact, and injuries to the driver and occupants of the other vehicle.

Depending on the type of policy, it may also cover damage to the at-fault driver’s vehicle.

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Personal Use Exclusions

Most personal car insurance policies have a list of exclusions, which are conditions or situations under which the policy would not be valid. These typically revolve around ride-sharing and delivery of goods.

For example, if you get into a car accident while participating in one of these activities, your personal use insurance policy may not cover you if you were to get into a car accident:

  • Delivering pizzas
  • Participating in a ride-share program as the “taxi” driver
  • Operating your vehicle with the intention of going to a business meeting for your small business

Business Use of a Vehicle

In order to decide whether or not you need business use insurance, it is important to understand what car insurance carriers consider business use.

In general, business use is the operation of your vehicle for a business purpose or the operation of a vehicle that is owned by a business.

  • Picking up any type of good or product and/or delivering it to another person or business
  • Transporting passengers or goods for a service fee
  • Driving between work locations, visiting a work site after driving to your primary place of employment and/or visiting clients in their homes or at their places of employment

Your vehicle is absolutely a commercial use vehicle if it is:

  • Registered in the name of your business or another business
  • Part of a rental car businesses or is rented by other drivers
  • Altered or has been modified for a specific businesses use, like carrying heavy equipment or products or used for snow removal
  • Used regularly by yourself and/or your employees for both personal and business use
  • Weighs 10,000 or more pounds

If you are in doubt about why type of insurance policy would be best for your driving habits and the use of the vehicle, it is best to disclose all of the ways you will be operating your vehicle and disclosing the percentage of time you plan to use your vehicle for business and personal use.

A business use or commercial vehicle is considered any vehicle that is used for the transportation or delivery of any products, goods or services.

The vehicle may also be classified as a business use vehicle if it is used to drive between work locations or visit clients and customers at their homes or places of employment.

If you use your vehicle to transport individuals for hire, like with a ride-sharing service, you will also need business use insurance.

You can find an affordable commercial insurance policy by using a car insurance comparison tool like the one on this page. Enter your zip code in the box below to start comparing for free!

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