UBER, LYFT and Ride-Share Auto Insurance
In 2015, Texas House Bill 1733 increased the automobile liability insurance requirements for companies like Uber and Lyft. Before this change in Texas Law there was no mandates in place, meaning if you were injured while in an UBER or LYFT vehicle, your ability to recover fully for your injuries and damages were limited by the amount of UM/UIM coverage you personally held and maybe the about the individual car insurance, if any the driver had any and if it was not void.
That all changed, January 1, 2016. The new insurance mandates went into effect January 1, 2016, requiring that there be a one million dollar liability insurance policy in existence covering both for the company such as Uber or Lyft and for the drivers.
And while Uber is mandated to insure the passengers or riders for a million dollars, there may now also be an additional policy for many Uber and Lyft drivers are getting their own commercial insurance to go ahead and insure their passengers.
This auto insurance will allow coverage for death, bodily injury, and property damage for each incident.
It is important to note, at least to the Uber or Lyft driver that Collision Coverage is not provided if the driver is not matched with a passenger. Collision coverage is the type of insurance coverage that pays for the driver's own property damage, at fault or not.
Uber and Lyft will provide some collision coverage when a driver is getting a rider or has one in the car, but there's none when the driver is just logged onto the app but not matched with a rider.
The new Texas Insurance mandate of one million in coverage can be less than one million in total coverage, if the Uber or Lyft or Ride-Share driver is not in the course and scope of his or her work with Uber or Lyft at the moment in time of the accident. This could occur where the driver is not matched with a passenger or the driver is available and waiting for a dispatch but no pending dispatch is in place at the moment of the accident. In such situations the driver for Uber, Lyft and/or any other transportation network company must maintain liability insurance amounting to $50,000 for bodily injury or death of each person in a car crash, $100,000 for bodily injury or death per incident, $25,000 for damage to property of others.
It should also be noted that in the event of an accident being caused by another driver, other than the Uber or Lyft Vehicle Driver, then uninsured motorist coverage should also be available.
It should further be noted that in the event of an accident, regardless of who is at fault the Uber or Lyft or Rideshare vehicle should also carry Personal Injury Protection or PIP coverage for its occupants.
Personal Injury Protection.
Some Texas approved insurance companies have begun offering insurance policies to fill in that gap. USAA and Geico have both unveiled insurance policies tailored for Texas rideshare drivers.
Additionally, Texas Department of Insurance has approved policy form filings for personal auto insurance from nine insurers that provide coverage for ridesharing or car-sharing:
- Allstate Fire and Casualty Insurance Company
- Farmers Texas County Mutual Insurance Company
- Garrison Property and Casualty Insurance Company
- Metropolitan Lloyd's Insurance Company of Texas
- State Farm County Mutual Insurance Company of Texas
- State Farm Mutual Insurance Company
- United States Automobile Association
- USAA Casualty Insurance Company
- USAA General Indemnity Company