Every vehicle in NY, whether owned by a company or a private citizen, must be insured in order to be legally driven. If your business has purchased or leased vehicles, you must have commercial auto insurance that cover property damage and bodily injury up to state minimums.
Many businesses rely on employees using their personal autos to conduct business operations. By NY law, your employees are required to carry personal auto insurance meeting minimum requirements including:
Though they must have personal coverage, this does not relieve your business of liability if an accident occurs. If your employee is driving for business purposes, their insurance will be primary and then your company can be named in a lawsuit as well. If this happens, your company would be liable for the expenses. Even if their personal insurance covers some of the expenses, any excess costs would be the responsibility of your company. Insuring these vehicles by a commercial auto policy helps to protect your company from these events.
In addition to the coverage required by the state of New York, there are a wide variety of coverage options to choose from, similar to those offered in a personal auto policy. You can choose from protections including:
Rather than specifying coverage limits for property damage vs. injury, your commercial auto policy will typically have one combined limit. This provides more comprehensive protection for your business across a wide range of accident situations.
If you rely on employee-owned autos exclusively, you can purchase a hired non-owned policy only, or you can purchase it in addition to your commercial auto policy. This helps to provide protection for the cars your company does not own and can be cost efficient for your business.
Many states, including New York, require auto insurance coverage for all vehicles. If your company uses vehicles as part of business operations, you must have commercial auto insurance to protect your business and comply with state regulations.