WHEN AN OPERATOR TAKES ON VANPOOLS, the ensuing growth in fleets and clients resembles the creation of a small business. Lancer Insurance offers two big tips before venturing into vanpools:
1) Do not keep vans on a private insurance policy and then run them as a business. Because vanpools can carry up to 15 breadwinners, a recommended policy includes $500,000 to $1 million limits per vehicle, per incident. “You should be buying limits that reflect that you are in the commercial transportation business,” says Randy O’Neill, senior vice president of Lancer Insurance. “If you make the commitment, you have to treat it as a business and buy the proper coverage, and the proper limits for your passengers.”
2) Operators also should incorporate commuter vanpooling services as separate business entities to isolate them from other business or personal assets. “You want to make sure that someone who may have gotten injured is going after your corporate insurance policy, not going after your personal bank accounts,” O’Neill says.