What Qualifies as a Commercial Vehicle for Insurance?


A commercial vehicle is any vehicle that a company uses for business purposes. While some types of commercial vehicles may seem obvious in their classifications, others are a bit trickier to identify. Understanding when your vehicle counts as commercial or CDL can help you determine when you need commercial auto insurance coverage.

What Qualifies as a Commercial Vehicle?

Any vehicle a company uses for business purposes serves as a commercial vehicle, so nearly any type of vehicle may be subject to this classification. If employees drive the vehicle within the scope of their work activities, it can qualify. Common types of vehicles include:

  • Passenger vehicles, such as cars, vans, buses, minivans, and limousines
  • Freight and delivery trucks
  • Agricultural trucks
  • Cement mixers
  • Motor homes
  • Wheelchair buses and vans
  • Garbage trucks
  • Tow trucks

Florida statute classifies a commercial motor vehicle as any vehicle with a gross vehicle weight of more than 26,000 pounds, or three or more axles regardless of weight, or is used in combination with a trailer that makes the gross vehicle weight exceed 26,000 pounds. These vehicles also require proper commercial insurance coverage in addition to proper CDL licensing.

How Much Commercial Vehicle Insurance Do You Need?

Once you have determined you have commercial vehicles that require insurance coverage, you will have to understand how much insurance you need. Florida laws differentiate between insurance requirements for smaller vehicles and larger commercial trucks.

The state minimum insurance requirements for any type of commercial vehicle are $10,000 for personal injury protection and $10,000 for property damage liability insurance. Larger commercial motor vehicles require greater minimum combined insurance amounts based on the weight of the vehicle. A business needs:

  • $50,000 coverage for a gross vehicle weight of 26,000 to 34,999 pounds
  • $100,000 coverage for a gross vehicle weight of 35,000 to 43,999 pounds
  • $300,000 coverage for a gross vehicle weight of 44,000 to 80,000 pounds

These increased insurance requirements are to account for the greater level of risk and potential for damage that come from these vehicles. Always check for requirements specific to the vehicles you need to insure.

Florida law requires businesses to have appropriate insurance coverage for all types of commercial vehicles. These requirements differ according to the weight and/or style of the vehicle. When in doubt, contact an insurance professional to help you determine which vehicles you need to cover and how much coverage you should purchase for each one.

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Sources:

https://www.dmv.org/insurance/types-of-commercial-vehicles-to-insure.php
https://www.dmv.org/commercial-drivers/cdl-class-types.php
https://taxcollect.com/commercial-vehicles/
http://www.polktaxes.com/motorvehicles/commercial_trucks.aspx