You can make money working for yourself by driving or doing deliveries in the gig economy. Uber reports that it has 3.9 millions drivers . The most frequently asked question is “Do I need special insurance to Uber or Lyft?”. Your personal auto insurance may not cover you if your driver status is a factor. This is all you need to know about California’s rideshare insurance.
How insurance works with rideshare drivers
Rideshare insurance, an add-on to personal car insurance, is activated only when you use the app. Your personal coverage will continue to be in effect for the remainder of the vehicle’s use. There are four phases or periods:
- Period 0: The app has been disabled. Any claims are covered by your personal vehicle insurance.
- Period 1: Log in to the app, waiting for a passenger match. Although rideshare insurance is available, it only covers liability.
- Period 2: You are matched with a passenger on the rideshare app and sent them on their way to pick you up. Your rideshare insurance is fully in effect.
- Period 3: The passenger must be in the vehicle. Your rideshare insurance is fully in effect.
California rideshare insurance requirements
California’s minimum liability coverage for drivers is required by the state.
- $15,000 per accident for injury or death of one person
- $30,000 to cover injuries or deaths to more than one person involved in an accident
- $5,000 per accident for property damage
The company that you work for will provide minimum coverage. The coverage for period one is only limited to liability coverage. Although the highest level of coverage is available in periods 2 or 3, it may not be possible to pay a deductible in the event of a claim.
Progressive Insurance sponsors Uber car insurance California coverage. These minimums can be found in the following categories.
Only liability coverage with a $1,000 deductible
There are limits:
- $50,000 per person for bodily injury
- Accident: $100,000 for bodily injury
- $30,000 property damage per accident
Periods 2 & 3
Liability coverage and comprehensive/collision if you have full coverage on your personal vehicle policy. Includes a $1,000 deductible
There are limits:
- Liability: $1 million per incident
- Comprehensive and collision insurance: The same as personal auto insurance
Lyft car specifications and insurance minima are the same as Uber’s, except that Allstate covers the coverage and the deductible for Uber is $2,500 rather than $1,000.
Uber and Lyft may offer additional coverage. You can add rideshare coverage to your personal carrier. Each insurance company has its limits. To learn more about rideshare insurance California, consult your insurer.
California requirements for rideshare drivers
- Smartphone that can run and download the app
- For Lyft, you must be at least 25 years old. Uber requires that you are at least 23.
- One year driving experience
- Valid California driver’s licence. An out-of-state license is acceptable for military personnel on active duty and their families.
- A four-door vehicle with at least five passengers, which must be 2001 or older for Lyft, or 15 years or Uber.
- The vehicle model cannot be listed as ineligible for Lyft, Uber
- A California license plate
- Photo evidence of vehicle insurance
- A passing vehicle inspection
- Pass the criminal background and driving history screening
California rideshare insurance companies
Not all car insurers offer rideshare insurance in California. These companies are worth looking into:
- Geico: This provider offers the lowest vehicle coverage among all California insurance companies.
- USAA: Affordable rideshare coverage California coverage for military personnel.
- Farmers: Farmers is one of the most popular California insurance companies. They have a large network of dedicated agents who are available to assist you if you have a rideshare-related issue.
- State Farm: Rideshare coverage can be added to your State Farm vehicle insurance.
How to handle an accident while driving for rideshare in California
It’s crucial to report any accident to the rideshare company. You can document the accident by taking photos and noting the date. The GPS of the rideshare app will allow you to locate details based upon the time and date of the accident. This will enable the insurance company to determine the period of coverage that you have.
You should contact the police if you suspect another driver was at fault for the accident.
- Contact number and name of the person
- Photo of their driver’s licence
- Number of the license plate
- Photo of the vehicle registration
- Contact information and policy numbers for their insurance company.
Are you required to have additional insurance if you are driving for ride-sharing in California?
If you are involved in an accident as a driver while driving your personal car, it won’t cover you. You may need additional insurance. To cover you online while driving, you can add rideshare coverage to your standard policy for a small amount.
What insurance covers you if you are involved in an accident while driving a rideshare vehicle?
Rideshare insurance is a way to add to your personal car insurance. It works while you are online and logged in. This covers the time you wait for ride requests, while waiting to pick up a customer or while your customers are in your car. Uber and Lyft offer a minimum level of insurance to cover the gap between your personal vehicle and rideshare coverage.
California rideshare insurance providers
Some carriers do not offer rideshare insurance. California’s top providers of rideshare insurance include Mercury, Geico and USAA. Compare rates and get quotes to find the best rates.
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