Food Delivery Drivers & Car Crashes: What to Know | Scott Goodwin Law

Food Delivery Drivers & Car Crashes: What to Know

by / Wednesday, 29 November 2023 / Published in Motor Vehicle Accidents, Workplace Woes
Food delivery person accepting an order at a restaurant.

Need to earn some extra cash? If you have a car, one option is to sign up to be a delivery person for a service like Instacart, Uber Eats, or Doordash and earn money by picking up restaurant orders and groceries for other people. These types of services offer a lot of flexibility about when people work, but before you sign up to be a delivery person, it’s very important to understand your auto insurance needs in case you get into a car accident while working.

Do Delivery Services Provide Auto Insurance for Drivers?

All of these delivery service companies are similar in nature for customers, but for drivers/delivery persons, there can be some differences in the way the companies operate that can be significant – especially if you’re injured while making deliveries. Each company has its differences, but generally speaking, they all require drivers to maintain their own auto insurance policy in accordance with state law. Some companies – not all of them – offer drivers additional auto insurance to cover them if they get into a car accident while actively making a delivery, often defined as the time between accepting an order and the time a customer’s order is delivered. But in some cases, the insurance these companies offer may only kick in once the driver’s own insurance is maxed out, so be sure to carefully review what these policies cover and what they don’t.

Personal Auto Insurance Policies & Delivery Drivers

Even though delivery service apps require drivers to have insurance for their vehicles, be aware that your personal auto insurance policy might not cover you if you get into a car accident while making food and grocery deliveries. The reason for this is that working for a delivery service is considered using your car for a commercial purpose, not a personal purpose. If you’re considering becoming a delivery person for one of these services, it’s a good idea to contact your insurance carrier to ask about your coverage. You may need to purchase additional coverage to protect yourself if you get into a car accident while working for a delivery service. 

Can Food Delivery Drivers Get Workers Compensation?

It’s also important to understand that making deliveries for companies like Instacart and DoorDash does not mean you are considered an employee of those companies. Instead, these types of companies classify their drivers/delivery persons as independent contractors. The difference between being classified as an independent contractor and being classified as an employee will be very important if you’re injured in a car accident while making deliveries. If you’re classified as an employee and you’re injured on the job, you’re entitled to workers compensation benefits to cover things like medical bills and lost wages during recovery. However, under Michigan law, independent contractors are not able to get workers compensation benefits. 

Contact a Michigan Car Accident Lawyer

If you’re injured while working for one of these delivery services, don’t hesitate to contact a car accident lawyer for help with your case. It’s not uncommon for insurance companies to be difficult about paying out for damages that they ought to. At Scott Goodwin Law, we’re experienced in handling Michigan no-fault cases and helping auto accident victims get the justice they deserve. Contact us today for help with your case.

Image: Pexels / Norma Mortenson