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Insurence Needed???

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself to the Community' started by albhb3, Dec 18, 2007.

  1. albhb3

    albhb3 PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,523

    Do you need insurence if you are only doing driveways? On the condition of having a contract signed by both the owner of the home, and a witness signature? Also if I dont do any type of salting or sanding, and if in the contract it says that you do not garenty that the driveway will not be slippery and that I have no liability to any accedents that happen to the customer anyone that has walked over the plowed area. Thanks.
  2. Mark Oomkes

    Mark Oomkes PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,238

    Insurance is overrated. So is having up to date licenses on the trucks. Don't even bother with insurance for your vehicle.


    Doesn't matter if God witnessed the signing.

    You can say it all you want, but people are stupid and think that nothing is their fault anymore. Wear high heels in the winter? You should've salted. Might not go anyplace in a lawsuit, but better safe than sorry.

    Might be a wise idea to incorporate or become an LLC to limit your personal liability as well.
  3. Mick

    Mick PlowSite.com Veteran
    from Maine
    Messages: 5,546

    That's for sure. Just ask the nut who got my town's account and thought he'd do 52 miles with one truck - unregistered, uninspected and without liability insurance. Town council was not very happy with the State DOT report.

    Bottom line - it's called a "Residential" insurance policy. Another contractor in our area wasn't properly insured for residentials and has just lost everything; including his business and trucks. He'll never be able to legally plow again (never get insured). He still owes the State for fines and another individual for a judgement. It'll take years to pay.
  4. albhb3

    albhb3 PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,523

    ok thanks for the help. Totaly agree with the idea of them not thinking its there fault.
  5. SnoFarmer

    SnoFarmer PlowSite Fanatic
    from N,E. MN
    Messages: 9,883

    How does it differ from a commercial policy?
    If you are plowing for compensation is that not commercial?

    My/our commercial policy then does not cover you/us if we plow residential drives?

    Last edited: Dec 18, 2007
  6. Mick

    Mick PlowSite.com Veteran
    from Maine
    Messages: 5,546

    Residential - Generally all or a majority of single family sites. May or may not include duplexes, apartments and private roads.

    Commercial - sites which are used by the general public - businesses, and may include duplexes, apartments etc, depending on the insurance company.

    Industrial - self-explanatory - not routinely used by the general public. Factories, distribution centers etc.

    Municipal - government owned or managed. Streets, highways, schools etc.

    Individual insurance companies may have policies whereby some accounts of one type can be mixed with another. For instance, I had a written statement that I could plow commercial accounts on a Residential policy, providing the number of commercial accounts did not exceed the number of residential accounts. So technically, I could plow a shopping mall for every single family account. On the same policy - I got the ok to plow a library, although it was by definition a commercial site. Reason was the remoteness of the site. I showed them that it was in a rural area with no other public facility within five miles of the library.
  7. SnoFarmer

    SnoFarmer PlowSite Fanatic
    from N,E. MN
    Messages: 9,883

    o.k.,, thanks that explains it.
  8. Plowin in VT

    Plowin in VT Senior Member
    Messages: 233

    Look at it this way. Most people out there are decent folk, but every now and then you get a piece of scum that's looking to get rich quick. You plow their driveway and they "fall". They will get a lawyer, and claim that you were negligent and sue you for a lot of money, voiding the clause in the contract. I don't know about you, but I do not have a couple hundred thousand dollars sitting around to pay off a lawsuit, so that's where the insurance kicks in. Your insurance co. will get the lawyer to fight it, and you can continue to work, do your business, and keep your house and truck, and not have to file bankruptcy.

    Sure, you probably will never need to use your insurance, but the one time you do, you'll be thanking your lucky stars that you got it.

    BTW, don't get a policy for anything less than $1 million in coverage.
  9. Kramer

    Kramer Senior Member
    Messages: 386

    Do you have enough work to cover the cost of insurance?? A 1 million commercial policy is about $700-800.

    Thats a lot of driveways---you're just starting out right??

    We can argue the legal issues all day but the economics of plowing driveways part time makes it difficult to justify. Just an observation. Commercials seem to make it easier as theres usually more dollars involved in lots.

    In residentials, stay away from shoveling walks and signing up for salting as much as possible. Thats where the majority of compaints come from.