Are you using your vehicle for a work trip? Insurance may not cover you

It depends, but keeping the insurance company informed plays an important role

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The company vehicle is in the store and your boss calls you to ask if you can use your personal car to drop off designs for a customer. Even if it is only once, if you are involved in a collision, your insurance company may not cover the damage.


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When it comes to using your personal vehicle for business trips, there are three levels, or categories of situations, that insurance companies consider. To them, it’s how often you use your car for business that matters, and you should always keep them informed if anything changes.

Let’s take a look at each level and see how it impacts your insurance coverage.

One-off work runs

The first category assumes that you have a personal car that you use for a single race. This is something that does not happen very often.

Perhaps your work vehicle (the one your employer pays to insure) is in the shop being repaired. If you must rely on your personal vehicle for a professional race, you must notify your insurance company before making the trip. Otherwise, you could risk not being covered if you have to make a claim resulting from an event that occurred during the trip.


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More frequent working trips

The next level refers to a personal car that is sometimes used for professional racing. For example, let’s say you’re a real estate agent who picks up or drops off clients when you show them a house, or you’re an architect who occasionally delivers drawings to a client. Your premium would be slightly higher than for a personal-use vehicle, but if you’ve properly informed the insurance company about your car’s detailed usage, you should be safely covered in the event of a collision.

Commercial use of a personal vehicle

The last level is the commercial use of a vehicle on a regular basis. For example, maybe you deliver pizza or you are a courier. The percentage of time you drive for work is certainly higher than in the first two cases; therefore, not surprisingly, your premium would be higher.


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But again, the big question: what if you just had to do a quick race with your own car?

Insurers are more lenient in this kind of situation where you switch from personal use to business use once. However, they are less forgiving if you use your personal vehicle for regular business errands and don’t bother to let them know.

Why insurance companies want to know how you’ll use your vehicle

You might think that how you use your vehicle is none of your insurance company’s business. But the premiums are determined based on several factors, including the use of the vehicle. Once you move from personal to corporate status, “the overall use of the vehicle has changed,” says Anne Marie Thomas, Director of Consumer and Industry Relations at the Insurance Bureau of Canada.


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Take the case of pizza delivery, for example: “It’s different from going from personal use to business use because you’re not going to be driving at breakneck speed to get to the customer like you would. if you only had 30 minutes to deliver. pizza an hour, ”says Thomas. If you deliver pizza, you might make five stops, pull over sidewalks, and move on to the next. There are more risks involved. Not to mention the simple fact that you drive more.

When you register for a car insurance policy, you will be asked how many kilometers you drive to get to work. Based on this information, your insurance premium is adjusted and classified as personal, professional or commercial use.

And if you ever change that status, says Thomas, be sure to let your insurance broker know. “There isn’t too much information, even the slightest change. ”

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