There is no single insurance policy that covers all types of risks, liabilities, accidents, damages, and injuries. You have to obtain a policy specific to the risks you want to cover. Do not assume that a commercial general liability insurance policy will cover all risks you might come across in the course of your business operations. For example, this type of insurance policy does not cover liability associated with a business vehicle. If a customer slips in your store and suffers injury, the general liability insurance will cover the claim but if a customer’s car is damaged while in your custody, it does not cover the claim. To get coverage for such specific claims not covered under the general liability policy, you need garage keepers insurance coverage.
What Is Garage Keepers Insurance?
To understand garage keepers insurance, first, you have to know about the garage liability insurance.
Garage Liability Insurance
This policy is designed for auto focused businesses that need general liability protection mainly for covering auto business liability. It covers claims arising out of accidents during the garage business operations. It covers both bodily injury and property damage claims. Third party injuries are covered under it. This policy will pay for the medical bills of a customer who suffered a slip and fall injury at your business place. Property damages caused by the business owner’s equipment are covered. It provides coverage when the customer’s injury is caused by the employee’s dishonesty. A customer’s vehicle damaged because of a product sold or manufactured by the shop is covered under it. This umbrella policy covers many such claims but it does not cover the property and tools of the policyholder. It is restricted to the garage area only.
It may seem that everything is already covered under the general garage liability insurance policy. However, the devil is in the detail. With any insurance policy, you have to pay attention to the claims, risks, and damages that are not covered. In this case, it excludes coverage of property in the policyholder’s custody, control or care. The customer’s vehicle stored at your place for storage or repair is not covered. If your employee takes a customer’s vehicle on a test drive and damages it, then it is not covered. It does not cover physical damage to your customer’s car while it is left for repair, storage or service with you. It is because of these exclusions that you need the garage keepers insurance coverage.
Garage Keepers Insurance
This insurance policy covers damage to the vehicle left in the custody, control or care of the shop. It is an essential coverage for small businesses operating in the auto service sector. It is suitable for auto repair shops, auto body shops, carwash hubs, auto maintenance companies, vehicle detailing, towing companies, service stations, emission testing centers, vehicle interior decoration shops, auto glass installers, vehicle painting, and other auto service businesses. You need this coverage to protect yourself for damages to your customer’s vehicle during repairing, servicing, attending or parking. It provides coverage for extreme weather, theft, vandalism, and fire while the vehicle is at your business place. This policy is generally sold along with the garage liability insurance but it is still a separate insurance coverage. There are some exclusions under it. For example, it does not cover faulty parts or workmanship. It excludes insufficient warranties and customer’s contents stored in the vehicle. You can add additional options like an endorsement with this policy to get coverage for the customer’s property. It is up to you if you are satisfied with the basic policy or would like to add additional riders to cover more risks, claims, and liabilities.
Garage Keepers Insurance Cost
It varies from one business to another. There are many factors that affect how much a policyholder has to pay for the garage keepers insurance policy. The type of your business, coverage inclusions and exclusions, additional riders added to the insurance, types of vehicles under your care, number of employees, their driving records, the location of your shop, onsite security, deductibles, payout limits, and other factors determine the amount you have to pay toward this insurance policy. If you are looking for a comprehensive and collision coverage for a small auto service business, you have to pay about $800-$2000 a year based on the risks you want to cover. You can reduce your premium amount by opting for a higher deductible and lower payout. In the same way, the premium amount will increase if you go for the higher payout and lower deductible.
Garage Keepers Insurance Symbols
Numeric symbols are used in the garage and dealers insurance policies to indicate the type of vehicles for which the coverage is provided. The garage keepers insurance is related to two symbols. The symbol 30 is the main one which covers the garage keepers insurance. It provides coverage for the customer’s vehicle left in the custody, care or control of the insurance policyholder. This policy is available to dealers and other auto service providers who take responsibility of their customer’s vehicle for the storage, repair or service. The symbol 21 designated for Any Auto covers liability and medical bills. It offers coverage for any vehicle the insurance holder comes in contact with. When it comes to specific damage coverage, it is the symbol 30 designated for the garage keepers insurance that takes precedence.
Where to Get Garage Keepers Insurance?
There are three ways to get this coverage. The first option is to contact an insurance company that provides this insurance coverage. The second option is to contact an insurance agent. The third option is to visit an online website that aggregates insurance policy offerings from different insurance companies. An agent will help you select the right garage keepers insurance policy quickly and easily. You only need to inform about your specific coverage requirements. The online insurance policy aggregating website lets you compare various offers and quotes from different insurance companies. Such a website also has informational contents related to the insurance policies and industry
There are many things that can go wrong with your customer’s vehicle while it is placed under your care for service or any other purpose. It is better to pay a small amount for the insurance coverage and protect your business from liabilities and claims. Read the fine prints when taking this insurance policy. Check what types of risks are covered and the risks that are excluded. In most cases, you have an option to add riders specific to your insurance needs and preferences.