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Insurance coverage for Uber drivers

Chances are, if you’re driving for UberX, you aren’t covered by your current insurance company. Here’s why: When you offer a ride in exchange for payment, you are no longer just using your car for personal use; you’re technically operating your own business which isn’t covered under a regular personal auto insurance policy and could lead to a claim being denied if you were ever in an accident while involved in ride-sharing.

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Early this year, one of our insurance companies, Aviva Insurance, announced that it will begin offering ride-sharing insurance effective February 1, 2016. This coverage is an endorsement that attaches itself to your current auto policy to provide protection for you and your passenger(s) while you are operating for Uberx. Unfortunately, this solution isn’t the convenient answer that most Uberx drivers are looking for.

As you can see below, a look at Aviva’s premium calculator on their ride-sharing coverage page shows that the extra coverage can cost more than half your current premium amount, which can be a bit much for many people who drive for Uberx because they want to make a little spending money. The coverage also limits the drivers to 10-20 hours logged into and available on the Uber app per week, so a driver could be logged in and waiting for a fare, but it would still count as a “ride share hour”.

This may be irrelevant, though, because ride sharing is currently illegal in the region. While the decision to legalize ride-sharing lies in the hands of different municipalities, a recent CBC article states that Waterloo Region staff are keeping their eye on private member’s bill 131 which was submitted to the Ontario Legislature that addresses the sharing economy. If passed, it would regulate companies such as Uber and Airbnb. In the meantime, Uber drivers are still facing opposition from more traditional transportation providers.

Essentially, driving for Uberx isn’t as straightforward as many people would think, and Keil-Dadson recommends that if you are considering becoming a driver for a ride-sharing app, you recognize the drawbacks as well as the benefits. If you decide that ride-sharing is still the right option for you, talk to your insurance broker to ensure you’re properly covered.