In November, the Carsharing Association released a draft liability insurance guideline for round-trip carsharing operators in the United States. This guideline has been developed to protect consumers of carsharing services and strengthen the carsharing industry’s reputation for providing a safe and practical alternative to private car ownership. The CSA encourages carsharing organizations to communicate to the consumer the risks of using carsharing services and the available insurance coverages that reduces risk using clear language.
The CSA recommends carsharing organizations provide liability insurance coverage with a minimum of $300,000 per incident for their member-drivers. Many CSA member organizations exceed this standard and insure their member-drivers for $1 million per incident. Carsharing operators should be transparent and publish the limits of the liability insurance on their website. Member-drivers should know how much coverage is available in the event of a crash.
If the member-driver wants greater coverage than the limit of the liability insurance offered by the carsharing organization, the member-driver should be given the option of purchasing additional liability insurance. If the member-driver has a privately-owned vehicle registered in their name, the liability insurance coverage associated with that vehicle may insure the member-driver in the event of an at-fault collision up to the limit described in the policy. The carsharing organization should direct the member-driver to consult with their insurance broker about the coverages included in their privately-owned vehicle policy. If the member-driver does not have a privately-owned vehicle registered in their name, the carsharing organization should recommend the member-driver obtain a personal liability policy from an insurance broker to get additional coverage in excess of the limits offered by the carsharing organization’s liability policy.
The Insurance Information Institute (http://www.iii.org) has reviewed this draft guideline and has endorsed the recommendations of the CarSharing Association.
The draft liability insurance guideline will be open for public comment until December 31 and a final version will be issued before the end of January 2014.