Rented Handicap Accessible Van - Coverage

    Posted by MAIA on Jul 10, 2019 12:01:00 AM

    QUESTION

    This question was answered based upon current rules, regulations & statutes in effect on April 11, 2019

    Good Morning Irene,

    I have a question for you.

    My insured has a private passenger auto policy; they need to rent a handicap accessible van for a 24 hour period.  The company they are renting from advised them they do not provide insurance coverage, and my insured needed to contact us for coverage.

    I checked with the insurance company my insured is with and they indicated – see below:

    Because the vehicle is not a replacement of what is currently on the policy – and I don’t think the vehicle would qualify under a personal auto policy the Mass auto policy would most likely decline coverages to this non-owned vehicle

    Do you have any idea on where or how my insured can obtain coverage for this rented van?  During the rental time; my insured’s vehicle will not be driven or in use.

    Please advise.

    Thanks Irene. 

    ANSWER

    Irene Morrill:  A handicapped van that that has a physical damage rating symbol …but is merely “outfitted” for handicapped individuals could be insured under a MAP if “owned”. 

    It does NOT have to be a “replacement vehicle” for the MAP to respond ...if it is a replacement vehicle it fits the definition of “your auto” …which can be a “good thing” …but the Map also covers the “just because situations”

    Whether or not one COULD insure it under a MAP …

    Parts 4,5 only require you be “legally responsible” and are not restricted to a type of vehicle
    Part 6 states it covers you when occupying another vehicle …which it is
    Part 7 and 9 …does say it applies to “your auto” …which this is not and “other private passenger autos” …this is a restriction that Parts 4,5,6 do not state.  Is a handicapped van a “private passenger auto” …that is a company question … Many carriers state that if it qualifies under rule 27 – definition of private passenger auto …then they consider it a “private passenger auto” …others state …if we’d insure it under the MAP then it’s covered and others say …”car-type” vehicles.

    So it is physical damage coverage that is in question.

    I “assume” the renter has insurance … and if you are a permissive user …then their coll/comp should apply.

    Other than that …I have no idea how to “guarantee” coll/comp when renting a handicapped vehicle.  Plus the MAP has an exclusion for custom equipment in a pickup or van and THAT can be a problem for all the equipment necessary to make it a “handi-capped van”.  If it were under a MAP then one would add the custom equipment endorsement …when it isn’t owned …one hopes the owner’s insurance pays.

    This document is not a legal opinion and should not be relied upon as such. The intent of this document is to provide a general background regarding the topic or topics discussed, not to provide legal advice. Producers and agencies should consult an attorney regarding specific situations and specific questions with respect to the topic or topics covered in this document. Neither the Massachusetts Association of Insurance Agents, Number One Insurance Agency nor any of its employees shall be responsible for any errors or omissions regarding any statements made in this document, nor any errors or omissions regarding any statutes, regulations, court rules, and/or any other government documents cited in this document.

    Topics: 2018

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