At Binford Insurance, we’ve noticed the recent boom of meal deliveries. Certainly, restaurant clients have explored offering more delivery services to remain competitive and grow their revenues. As with any new opportunities, it’s also important to consider risks. If meal delivery drivers have an accident, is the restaurant liable, and if so, properly insured?
Who is Responsible for Claims Against Delivery Drivers?
Before exploring coverage for meal delivery, it’s important to separate the matter into two separate issues. You might use one of the popular meal delivery apps. Alternatively, you may employ your own drivers. In some cases, you may even do both. The legal system may view each of these circumstances differently when it comes to assigning responsibility for claims.
Liability With Meal Delivery App Drivers
These days, many restaurants and drivers participate in food-delivery apps to obtain orders and manage deliveries. In general, the restaurant won’t have a liability burden if the driver took their order through such services as Uber Eats or Grub Hub. If the service deals with many restaurants, and employs contract drivers with their own vehicles, it’s unlikely that a claimant could argue that the driver was employed by the restaurant.
Typically, the matter of insurance for drivers is something worked out between the delivery service and the driver. These days, the large services offer their insurance too. Even though the restaurant has to sacrifice some revenue to participate in these services, they may offer a good solution for small businesses that don’t want to take on an additional liability burden.
Liability for Your Restaurant’s Drivers
Of course, lots of local restaurants use their drivers. They want more control over their profits and their customers. When you use drivers from an app, the customers are the service’s customers and not your own.
If this describes your business, these are some things to know:
- No restaurant owner should assume that the driver’s insurance policy will cover an accident that occurs while the driver is working for them. It’s common for personal insurance to exclude using the car to perform work explicitly. If one of their drivers causes an accident and isn’t covered, the claimant is likely to seek reimbursement from the restaurant they made deliveries for.
- Typical commercial car insurance only protects vehicles that the business owns. If you plan to have drivers use their cars, you need to explore leased and non-owner insurance policies. You also need to advise drivers to consult with their insurers or agents to make sure they’re well covered. Several insurers will offer fairly inexpensive optional coverage for ride-share or delivery drivers.
How to Make Sure Your Restaurant is Covered for Meal Deliveries
Every business decision you make has some risks. Here at Binford Insurance, we make certain that our clients understand how to manage them. Contact us to understand how to protect yourself and your drivers against possible claims best. We can help you understand the best course of action for your unique situation. After that, we’ll help you find affordable premiums for the right insurance for all aspects of your growing business. If you ever do need to file a claim, we will help you with that as well.