In October, ride-sharing giant Lyft formally announced its first expansion outside the United States, confirming it will enter the Toronto market before the close of the year. While the move will provide competition to Uber, questions were raised about whether Lyft will be able to get insurance company support in the same way its rival has.
With insurance regulations clear for ride-sharing companies in Ontario, it seemed likely companies would be willing to work with Lyft. Aviva Canada has announced it will be the official commercial automobile insurance partner for Lyft, mirroring a similar collaboration Intact Insurance has with Uber.
Aviva Canada says it will use an insurance fleet policy, with coverage varying depending on four phases of the ride-sharing system: 1) private use of the vehicle, 2) turning on the Lyft app to search for a ride, 3) driving to pick up the passenger, and 4) picking up passengers and dropping them off.
“Aviva recognizes that the mobility needs of our clients are changing and so, as an innovative insurer, we want to be responding to the changing mobility models that are out there in the market,” Mazdak Moini, vice president of commercial insurance told Canadian Underwriter Tuesday. “That’s why we found an opportunity initially to work with Lyft to be an exciting one, as they are doing their first international expansion into Canada.”
During Phase 0, the driver will have coverage under the usual personal auto policy. Phase 1 is when the driver opens the Lyft application to be ready for a trip. Aviva’s coverage will deliver $1 million of Third Party liability, standard accident benefits, and a $1,000 deductible for collision and comprehensive.
Accepting a trip opens the Phase 2 of the coverage, which includes $2 million Third Party liability, standard accident benefits, and a $1,000 deductible for collision and comprehensive applies. The phase 2 benefits and limits are also mirrored in Phase 3.
“Once the passenger has exited the vehicle, you either circle back to Phase Zero, or Phase 1, depending on whether you leave the app on to be available to pick up any additional clients or not,” Moini explained to Canadian Underwriter. “So, if you leave the app on because you are looking for your second fare, you are entering into Phase 1, but if you turn the app off, because you’re done for the day, then you’re down to Phase Zero, when your personal insurance policy picks up.”