American Property Casualty Insurance Association
  • Staff Contact: Nicole Mahrt-Ganley     
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Nicole Mahrt Ganley


916-440-1116 or cell 916-616-5855






January 30, 2014

PCI Reminds Seattle City Council: Personal Auto Insurance Will Not Cover Drivers or Passengers in Ride Sharing Programs


SEATTLE, WA – As the Seattle City Council considers a local ordinance today regulating ride sharing programs or transportation network companies (TNC), the Property Casualty Insurers Association of America (PCI) urges council members to clearly understand that personal auto insurance policies are not intended to cover this use of a car and will likely exclude any and all coverage for vehicles that get in accidents while engaged in TNC activities.  The following statement can be attributed to Kenton Brine, PCI assistant vice president.  Mr. Brine will provide testimony during today’s council meeting educating council members about the livery exclusion in a personal auto policy. 

Ridesharing is a new trend popping up in major cities around the country where a company uses a smartphone app to connect drivers with people needing a ride for a fee as part of an organized program.  

“We support innovation of new companies and transportation methods, however drivers and passengers must know where they stand regarding insurance coverage.  A personal auto insurance policy will not provide coverage for an accident if the car is being used in a TNC program. Policyholders need to be protected and understand that personal auto insurance policies have a clear livery exclusion that has been in force and upheld by the courts for decades. 

This new trend raises a variety of insurance related questions that should be considered.  Drivers and passengers should be aware that their personal policy will not provide coverage for losses or damage while the car is used in a ride sharing program.  Council members should also question how drivers and passengers will be covered if the car is hit by an uninsured or underinsured driver, given that the personal auto policy will not provide coverage.

PCI believes the regulation by municipalities like Seattle of ride sharing services is appropriate.  However, the business of insurance is regulated by the state, and we recommend that insurers and ride sharing companies engage in a dialogue and reach agreement on legislation that might be introduced in the state legislature that will ensure uniformity across the state on issues of insurance coverage and ride sharing.”


PCI is composed of more than 1,000 member companies, representing the broadest cross-section of insurers of any national trade association. PCI members write over $195 billion in annual premium, 39 percent of the nation’s property casualty insurance. Member companies write 46 percent of the U.S. automobile insurance market, 32 percent of the homeowners market, 37 percent of the commercial property and liability market, and 41 percent of the private workers compensation market.