Car Insurance for Gig Workers: What Coverage Do You Need?

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Car Insurance for Gig Workers: What Coverage Do You Need?

It’s 2022: inflation is up to 7.5%, Nathan Chen has in fact won a gold medal at the Beijing Winter Olympics, and the gig economy is thundering along. In fact, according to Pew Research Center, a whopping 16% of adults surveyed in August 2021 have earned money through an online gig platform, a stat which doesn’t even include more conventional freelance work. Because the gig economy hinges upon a short-term model of work, these jobs typically don’t provide the benefits and protections that come with traditional full-time employment. So if you’re a gig worker, you may be left wondering what types of gig worker insurance you need to be fully protected. 

As with all your insurance needs, there is no one-size-fits-all plan for individuals working temporary gigs. The type of industry you work in will shape which policies make the most sense for you. This may seem obvious: a journalist doesn’t have the same risks as a dog walker, who has different risks than a rideshare driver. Still though, for all three, some combination of the following coverage options will offer gig workers the most security. Here are some gig worker insurance policies to consider:

Types of Gig Worker Insurance

Commercial Liability Protection

You may want to consider Commercial Liability insurance, a type of policy that provides coverage to a business for personal injury, bodily injury, or property damage that results from the business’s operations or on the business’s premises, if you lease a space that’s open to the public, for instance.

Professional Liability Insurance (aka errors and omissions)

For all writers, accountants, and self-employed life gurus, you might want to consider purchasing a Professional Liability policy, which protects you against negligence and other claims from clients. General liability insurance will not cover you if your client sues owing to issues of negligence, misrepresentation, or malpractice. So if you’re in an industry where this could be a concern, you may want to talk to your provider.

Car Insurance for Gig Workers (Rideshare or Delivery)

And now, deep breath as we prepare to dive into an explanation on what to do if you use your car for work. Stay with us! 

If you just drive your car to and from your place of work — be that a favorite coffee shop, coworking space, or project site — personal automobile insurance, which covers standard commuting, is all that you need.

If you use your car specifically to get between appointments throughout the day, you’ll want to have a personal auto policy that covers “business use.” 

And if you’re a gig worker who does rideshares or deliveries, you’ll want to protect yourself in a couple of ways using insurance:   

  • Some companies like Uber or Instacart offer their gig workers insurance, or some carriers allow you to opt-in to rideshare coverage on a standard auto policy. But the amount of protection can vary — and crucially, the protection only kicks in while you’re actually “on the job.” So for example, if you have an accident while waiting for a ride request, the liability limits are relatively low. 
  • So in addition to opting in to the insurance that the company provides, you’ll want to have your own car insurance policy as well to make sure you’re fully protected even in the time between rides. The best way to do that is to add an endorsement to your personal auto policy.

Gig Worker Disability Insurance

As a gig economy worker or self-employed person, imagining a long period where you’re unable to work can be particularly anxiety-inducing. But both long-term and short-term disabilities can wreak havoc on your business and life: If you can’t work, you can’t get paid. Disability insurance policies pay part of your income (often up to around 70% of your wages), which is especially important for gig or self-employed workers who don’t have company coverage. 

In some states, you might be eligible for state-sponsored disability insurance. This usually only covers a small amount though, so you’ll likely want to get your own disability policy, which would pay off on top of that.

Health Insurance for Gig Workers

When it was passed in 2010, President Obama’s Affordable Care Act opened health insurance up to millions of people who needed it. Short-term plans or policies purchased from private companies can be expensive, so while provisions vary by state, purchasing health insurance as a gig worker through state or federal marketplaces remains one of the most affordable options. 

Unemployment Insurance

Say you’re a traditional employee working a 9-to-5 at a bank on Main Street. If you get fired from your job, you would be eligible for unemployment benefits. But if you’re a gig worker, you don’t have unemployment insurance, so you’ll have no wages if you lose your work. In response to COVID-19, President Trump signed into law the CARES Act, which functioned as a $2.2 trillion economic stimulus. One of the provisions of the CARES Act was to include unemployment benefits for gig workers. Unfortunately, the law has since expired, leaving gig workers back at square one.

Manage Your Insurance Policies with Marble

Wherever you work, whatever you do, we want to make sure you’ve got the coverage you need — and that you can stay on top of it easily. Create your Marble account to keep all your policies organized and at your fingertips. Plus, you’ll even earn rewards for insurance, too.