Commercial NOHA: Schools, Influence Your Own Insurance Access and Costs
How much do you know about who’s driving any vehicles on behalf of your organization? What should you know? Of course, the vehicles owned by the organization but also vehicles you don’t own that may be used on behalf of the organization can present a big liability (under Hired and Non-owned Auto Liability). Commercial auto insurance rates are on the rise and underwriting is becoming more restrictive because of the increased number, severity of claims and increased medical costs.
When teachers and volunteers use their own vehicles to drive students on field trips, sports activities or after school programs and are involved in an auto accident the school entity will find coverage under the school’s commercial auto liability policy. However, the prudent solution is to do whatever can be done to prevent such occurrences all together whenever possible. It pays to protect your good loss experience by reducing situations that can lead to mishaps and claims. Such measures you can take include:
- Allow only preselected qualified drivers who are responsible employees to drive students in their own vehicles
- Make sure drivers have their own auto insurance with reasonable limits
- Keep a current file on drivers’ personal auto insurance information including an annual motor vehicle record to make sure approved drivers have not acquired any major driving violations
- Visually inspect drivers vehicle’s overall condition, apparent working condition, tire condition, etc.
- Confirm that authorized drivers consider themselves good qualified drivers and are committed to driving safely
- Offer authorized drivers safe driving courses and see what other loss control resources might be available from your broker or insurance company just as you do for the school’s owned vehicles
This investment in time and getting to know your staff better can help to avoid a serious claim incident, which no one wants, and may allow you improved underwriting status and lower premiums than non-self-monitored risks.