As you may have heard, Aviva is now working with Lyft to provide insurance for those involved with the program. Sounds like a great idea, especially for drivers and riders who may worry about who pays in the event of an accident. But what does the program really cover and at what point does the insurance come into play? Let’s take a look:
What is the Aviva Lyft program?
The Aviva insurance program covers Lyft via a commercial insurance fleet policy, with coverage and limit change depending on a few different factors. It means that drivers are now insured during all phases of the drive, right from the moment of opening the app to search for a ride.
The Aviva Lyft policy is divided into different phases, based on the use of a car at any moment in time. If the Lyft car is being used for private use, a personal insurance policy will apply (known as Phase Zero). Drivers are covered for whatever their personal car insurance policy covers them for. Once Lyft drivers mark themselves available for a ride, e.g. by opening the app, then the Aviva Lyft policy takes over (known as Phase 1). In this phase, drivers are covered with $1 million standard accident benefits and third-party liability with a $1000 deductible.
In Phase 2, which comes into effect when a driver accepts a trip, the third-party liability and standard accident benefits double to $2 million in coverage. This also applies to Phase 3 when picking up and dropping off a passenger.
What are the benefits of Aviva Lyft?
Using a vehicle for commercial purposes, such as for Lyft, voids most personal car insurance policies. This is because of the additional risks and liability that come from driving a vehicle and passengers to make money. While you could get your own commercial vehicle insurance, Aviva-Lyft is tailored for Lyft drivers and provides better coverage for less money. You don’t have to worry about being covered.
For example, if you’re a driver in the Lyft program, and are struck by another driver while at Phase 1 (actively seeking a passenger) then this would be covered and you wouldn’t have to rely on your personal insurance. This is especially beneficial to you if you’re seeking to keep your no claim bonus on your personal car insurance.
On top of this, Phase 3 lasts until your passenger has exited the vehicle, rather than until you close the app. This ensures that the passenger gets to their destination safely and, if the worst happens, you are insured. As apps can crash and phones can lose battery power rather rapidly when using an app like Lyft, it is incredibly useful that the wording of the policy includes coverage until your passenger has exited the vehicle, so that you aren’t unknowingly using your personal insurance just because your phone died, the app crashed or you have other technical issues.
What are the implications?
The partnership has some subtle implications that impact your coverage. For example, Phase 3 ends once the passenger exits the vehicle, rather than when the driver exits the app. If you leave the app open because you’re seeking another passenger once your current one exits the vehicle, the Aviva Lyft policy will return to Phase 1. However, if you exit the app completely, you go to Phase Zero in which you’re no longer covered by Aviva-Lyft but by your personal insurance.
Aviva and Lyft’s partnership in insurance is a radical new idea that can be extremely beneficial to regular Lyft drivers. Not having to worry about insurance when you’re ‘on the clock’ can be a real stress reliever. If you’re a driver in the Lyft programme and would like to enjoy the full benefit of the Aviva Lyft insurance partnership, or even if you just want to learn more, give your broker a call.