If you operate a vehicle for a business-related purpose in Connecticut, you need to purchase commercial auto insurance. Commercial auto insurance is different from personal car insurance. Businesses face greater risks than individuals when it comes to driving, and companies therefore usually have higher liability limits than individuals.
Commercial auto insurance applies to vehicles used to transport people or to pick up or deliver goods. You may also need commercial auto insurance if your vehicle is registered to a business, corporation, or partnership; is rented or leased by someone else; or is equipped with modifications such as a snowplow or cooking equipment for a business-related purpose.
If you own a personal vehicle that you use for a business-related purpose, you should have commercial auto insurance. If you get into an accident while using your personal vehicle for work and do not have commercial insurance, your insurer may not pay the claim.
Connecticut law requires company cars to have the same minimum coverage limits as passenger vehicles. These are $20,000 per person for bodily injury, $40,000 for bodily injury per accident involving two or more injured people, and $10,000 for property damage per accident.
Any commercial vehicle that can seat more than eight passengers must have at least $1,500,000 in liability coverage. A commercial vehicle that seats 16 or more passengers must have at least $5,000,000 in liability coverage.
The liability requirements for larger commercial vehicles vary depending on what they are transporting. A freight vehicle over 10,000 pounds that carries non-hazardous materials must have at least $750,000 in liability coverage. Freight vehicles over 10,000 pounds that transport moderately hazardous materials are required to have at least $1,000,000 in liability coverage. Freight vehicles over 10,000 pounds that transport highly hazardous materials must carry at least $5,000,000 in liability coverage.
Even if your company is not required to carry a high amount of liability insurance, it is a good idea to have high limits. Jury awards for accidents involving injuries caused by company vehicles tend to be higher than awards for cases involving personal vehicles.
Some businesses are required to report their commercial auto insurance coverage to the Connecticut Department of Motor Vehicles every year. Vehicles with a gross weight, gross vehicle weight rating, gross truck/trailer weight, or gross combination weight rating over 18,000 pounds that operate in Connecticut only, or vehicles with a gross vehicle weight, gross vehicle weight rating, or gross truck/trailer combination weight of more than 10,000 pounds that operate in interstate commerce are required to report their insurance to the DMV.
If you operate a business in Connecticut that uses a vehicle for your operations, you should carry commercial auto insurance. Petruzelo Insurance can help you figure out how much coverage you need and compare rates from leading insurers. Contact us today to get a quote.
For more information on commercial auto insurance in Connecticut, call: 1-866-479-3327
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