What is Florida Commercial Automobile Insurance?
Almost every Florida business has automobile exposures – even organizations that do not own automobiles! The policy that most often provides coverage for commercial automobile exposure is the Business Auto Coverage policy. This policy covers auto liability and physical damage. All organizations that own or use automobiles are subject to liability claims in the event of negligent injury to a person or damage to his property. The business also has a property exposure from the auto itself: the loss of use of the vehicle during repair and/or the reduction of the value of the vehicle as a result of damage. All autos that are company-owned, hired, borrowed, or even employee-owned, and are used on behalf of the business, can incur a loss. Here’s how the associated policy list breaks down:
- Owned Autos – covers an auto that is the property of the organization and is operated by an employee while on the job
- Non-Owned and Hired Autos – provides coverage for an auto that is not owned by the organization, but is hired from another party. Common examples include leased or rented cars. The length of use determines whether the lease or rental coverage applies.
- Employers Non-Ownership – provides protection for an auto which belongs to an employee or other party, but is used for business purposes.
What are some coverages provided by a Florida Commercial Auto policy?
- Liability coverage – provides protection for losses that result from the negligent operation of an auto. An example of this type of liability loss would be the damage that occurs when an auto injures a person while the driver was attempting to deliver a package.
- Physical damage – is damage to the actual vehicle and includes collision and comprehensive losses.
- Collision – direct and accidental damage caused by a collision with another vehicle or object or a rollover. For example, a driver loses control, strikes another vehicle, and damages the bumper and front lights of his vehicle.
- Comprehensive coverage – provides coverage for direct and accidental damage resulting from other causes, such as theft, glass breakage, hitting an animal, and falling objects.
- Uninsured and Under-Insured Motorist Insurance (often referred to as “UM/UIM”) – provides coverage to the auto owner for injuries caused by another motorist, who is liable for the loss, and is either uninsured or under-insured. UM provides compensation to the occupants of the covered auto and also to qualifying pedestrians, who are injured in an at-fault accident.
What are some additional coverage options available in Florida?
Some of the most common available additional coverages include:
- Medical Payments – provides coverage for reasonable and necessary medical expenses to occupants of a covered auto, regardless of whether the driver is or is not at fault for the accident.
- Personal Injury Protection (‘PIP’) – provides coverage for medical expenses, income loss, and other expenses that result from bodily injury to occupants of a covered auto. These benefits include medical and rehabilitation expenses, substitute services, such as hiring a housekeeper to perform tasks that were previously done by the injured person, and death benefits for survivors.
- Roadside Assistance – provides coverage for expenses incurred as the result of a breakdown, such as the repair of a flat tire or the replacement of a dead battery.
- Expanded Towing – provides additional coverage for towing and minor roadside repairs.
- Rental Reimbursement – pays for a rental car necessitated by an accident, and is subject to the stated limits for transportation
- Hired Auto Physical Damage – covers contractual obligations to a rental or leasing company and comprehensive and collision damage to a leased or rented vehicle
Does a Florida Commercial Auto Policy have deductibles?
It is extremely common to have a deductible for Collision and Comprehensive coverage and the amount of the deductible is flexible. But, regardless of the amount, the deductible must be paid before any other payments can be made. Thus, the policy holder should plan to have adequate funds available to cover the cost of the deductible when an accident occurs.
This is a general description of a Commercial Automobile Policy. It is not an explanation of your personal insurance policy. You must refer to your own individual policy to determine its coverage, definitions, limits, conditions, and requirements.