With the right insurance, truck drivers have the peace of mind knowing that their business’s liability and cargo are taken care of in case of an accident or incident on the road. But what happens when you do have an accident? While getting your vehicle back up and running as quickly as possible might be your main priority, you also need to prepare an insurance claim so that you’re able to get reimbursed for the cost of repairing your vehicle and replacing lost cargo if it’s not salvageable. Here’s what you need to know about insurance claims as a truck driver.
If you’re driving a commercial truck and you’re in an accident, it is your responsibility to report it. The first step is informing your own insurance company. Once you inform them of any accidents, they will tell you how to proceed with filing a claim. Your next step should be filing a police report (if necessary) and taking photographs of damage to both vehicles involved in an accident.
Bodily Injury Liability
This covers you (and your business) if someone is injured in an accident caused by you or your employees. Many states require commercial truck drivers to have at least $500,000 of bodily injury liability coverage. Bodily injury insurance may also protect you from lawsuits related to property damage if someone else’s property is damaged during a mishap. This can cover replacement costs of things like fences, signs and machinery damaged on job sites.
Personal Injury Protection: This coverage (also known as no-fault coverage) protects people who aren’t covered under another auto policy when they are injured in an accident with a commercial vehicle that has personal injury protection insurance.
Driver Insurance Medical Payments Coverage
If you’re in an accident, it’s important that you know what medical payments coverage (often called MedPay) is and how it can help you. Here are some basic rules about what it covers and why you need it.
Uninsured Motorist Coverage
If you’re driving a commercial truck and have an accident with a driver who doesn’t have insurance, uninsured motorist coverage could help you. It’s important that you understand your coverage limits; if your injury claim falls within those limits, you should be covered by an insurance policy. However, if your medical bills or other damages exceed those limits, your insurer won’t help you out beyond that point.
There are many steps to take when filing an insurance claim, so make sure not to rush through them and read over all instructions carefully. Keep track of everything—you might need it later on down the line. If you don’t think your company will pay up after your accident, contact a personal injury attorney who can help make sure that happens.
Collision Coverage Available For Truck Drivers
Most trucking companies are going to require that you have some kind of collision coverage when you start driving a truck. Collision insurance covers damage caused by an accident, meaning it will cover your truck if it’s in an accident with another vehicle or object. For example, if your trailer hits a guardrail on the highway, your collision coverage will kick in and repair any damage.
Collision is generally optional but almost always required if you want full commercial insurance coverage. If you don’t want to purchase it, ask about deductibles instead; with deductible amounts like $250 or $500 per incident, collision insurance isn’t strictly necessary.
Driver Insurance Comprehensive Coverage
In general, trucking insurance provides comprehensive coverage, which covers everything but collision and underinsured/uninsured motorist coverage. Your policy may or may not include personal injury protection (PIP), medical payments, roadside assistance and other coverage. Review your policy carefully so you understand what’s covered in your insurance package before filing a claim.
For example, if someone files a claim against you, your trucking insurance may cover property damage to their vehicle as well as any injuries sustained in an accident you caused. In addition, it’s important to know whether your company provides supplemental auto liability insurance because that can be especially valuable if an accident is far from home territory (or simply outside of your network).
Inflation Protection Policy On Truck Driver Insurance
One option is inflation protection insurance. Though it isn’t necessarily common in trucking, this type of policy covers your costs if they increase and doesn’t have a deductible. When you file a claim, you get that amount of money back, plus an extra allowance based on any increase in inflation since you purchased your policy. The downside is that it usually has higher premiums than a standard insurance plan and some states don’t require it by law. To get more information on how to make truck accident insurance claims, consider speaking with an independent agent or simply doing research online.