Car and truck owners tend to rely on their personal vehicles for a lot, from family activities and daily errands to recreation and work purposes. Vehicles are built to last, but they are also complex machines that take lots of wear and tear abuse on a regular basis and eventually need repair and maintenance services. That means as a mechanic or auto repair professional, you provide a crucial service that millions of people simply can't do without. At the same time, your career leaves you open to a wide range of unexpected expenses and financial setbacks caused by property damage and liability issues. Get the necessary protection against financial losses that you need to thrive in your career and grow your business success with the right Calgary mechanic insurance coverage from Krywolt Insurance.
Auto mechanic insurance, which is sometimes also referred to as auto repair shop insurance, mechanic shop insurance, or motor trade insurance, is a type of business insurance for mechanics that is designed to meet the needs of those who repair and service automobiles by addressing the financial risks and perils they are most likely to encounter. But it's not just a boilerplate of coverage that is used by all mechanics—no two business owners are exactly alike, so you may need different coverage or limits for your mechanic insurance than the garage down the street. At Krywolt Insurance, we seek out the best possible combination of coverages to address your specific risk exposures based on how you run your business, your location, the services you offer, and many other factors.
Calgary mechanic insurance coverages break down into two general categories: liability insurance and property insurance. Liability coverages such as commercial general liability and garage liability exist to offer you financial assistance with the costs of litigation and settlement in the event that you or one of your employees allegedly cause bodily injury or damage to a customer's property, and you are sued as a result. That can include expenses such as legal mediation, attorney fees, settlement costs, and more, up to the limits listed on your policy. Property damage coverage, such as commercial property insurance and garage keepers insurance, on the other hand, exist to get you the insurance compensation you need to repair or replace damaged property and equipment following a destructive event such as a fire, natural disaster, theft, or vandalism.
Any type of automotive business that involves the repair, maintenance, and servicing of vehicles or vehicle components in Calgary should be financially protected by a robust auto mechanic insurance policy. That includes:
Because auto mechanic insurance in Calgary is tailored specifically to the needs of each individual policyholder, there are some types of coverage that you may wish to include that aren't necessarily standard. There are also basic types of business insurance, such as commercial general liability and business property insurance, that are a basic part of most commercial insurance policies. Here's more information on the types of liability and property insurance coverage you may need or want as part of your package of insurance for mechanics in Calgary.
Commercial general liability insurance is one of the most common types of business insurance coverage because everyone needs the protection that it offers against financial loss should someone make a third-party liability claim against them for third-party bodily injury or third-party property damage. Your Calgary auto mechanic insurance carrier will provide financial assistance to cover attorney defense, court fees, and settlement costs such as medical bills and property repair or replacement.
For example, if a customer wandered into your garage and tripped over a toolbox that was left lying on the floor, breaking their ankle, they could choose to bring legal action against you in court to recover the cost of their medical expenses, as well as further settlements to compensate them for a loss of income if they can't work during their recovery period. If you have commercial general liability coverage as part of your auto mechanic insurance package, you can get financial help from your insurance carrier for expenses such as your attorney's fees, legal mediation, and settlement costs should the lawsuit be successful, up to the limits on your policy.
Garage liability coverage is a must-have for any type of business or auto professional who needs to take their customers' vehicles into their custody to provide services such as repair or maintenance. This liability insurance applies to legal and settlement costs that can arise if you or your employees are alleged to have caused damage to a vehicle that is in your care, custody, or control. Auto mechanics are at a higher risk of causing damage than many other types of professions because regardless of how experienced you are, there's always the potential to misjudge a situation or cause accidental damage when you're working on a complex machine.
Commercial general liability offers you some protection against third-party property damage litigation costs, but the fact is that your standard CGL coverage is likely not going to be sufficient for a mechanic. We all know that some individual vehicles can be very expensive on their own, and there is the potential for multiple vehicles to be damaged at once, which could result in multiple lawsuits against you. Garage liability on your Calgary mechanic insurance will give you peace of mind that you're properly covered against paying out-of-pocket to repair or replace property that has suffered third-party damage.
The typical person may not think of auto mechanic work as something that could potentially cause pollution, but as anyone who has worked on cars knows, sometimes it is necessary to work with toxic substances such as oil, gasoline, antifreeze, solvents, and more that can cause environmental harm if they end up somewhere they shouldn't be. Pollution liability coverage applies to both sudden incidents, such as chemical spills, and gradual destruction caused by a problem, such as a slow leak that allows toxic contaminants to seep into groundwater. For example, you could have a junked car sitting at the back of your property that is leaking fluids into the soil without your knowledge and impacting the property next door. If you're faced with an allegation of causing a polluting event, you could be forced to pay extensive costs for pollutant clean-up and much more, which would be covered by your pollution liability insurance up to the limits of your policy.
Most auto mechanics and those in similar professions work out of a fixed commercial property, such as an auto shop that is purpose-built for that type of work and contains essential equipment necessary to repair, detail, and restore vehicles. If something happened to your commercial building or the contents within, it would seriously compromise your ability to provide mechanic services until the damage was repaired or destroyed items were replaced—but like most business owners, you likely don't have the budget available to pay out of pocket for the cost of repair, replacement, and restoration. That's where commercial property coverage on your mechanic shop insurance package comes in. With this coverage in place, your insurance provider will offer you funds up to your policy limits to cover the costs of restoration and replacement in the event of an insured peril such as a fire, natural disaster, or theft.
Garage keepers insurance is a specialized type of property coverage that is needed by mechanics and anyone else in a business that involves keeping their customers' vehicles on their business property for a period of time. It's very common for a vehicle to need repair work that a mechanic isn't able to do on the spot, making it necessary for customers to leave their car or truck in the mechanic's care for a period of time that ranges from a few hours to a few weeks. During that span of time, there's a lot that could happen to cause serious damage to a vehicle that isn't owned by the mechanic but is in their care. For example, you could park a customer's car outside for the night, just in time for a surprise hailstorm that causes extensive hail damage. Garage keepers insurance prompts your Calgary mechanic insurance provider to supply funds necessary to replace a customer's damaged or destroyed vehicle, so you can get the hail damage repaired without having to pay for the repair costs yourself.
If you, the business owner, offers towing services, you're probably well aware that this specialized vehicle is for business purposes, such as a tow truck, must be covered by a commercial auto insurance policy in order for it to be driven legally in Canada. But some people don't realize that vehicles insured on their personal auto insurance policy are not covered if they're being used for work purposes. For example, if you regularly hop in your personal truck during a work day and head out to pick up a shipment of auto parts, and you were involved in a collision while doing so, it would not be covered. If you use a vehicle for work purposes on a regular basis, it must be covered by commercial auto insurance as part of your Calgary mechanic insurance package.
People are often confused on this point, and that's understandable since garage liability and garage keeper insurance seem very similar on the surface. However, there is a key difference: garage liability insurance is a type of liability coverage that applies to the legal costs of defending yourself in court and paying settlements should you be found liable for causing property damage. Garage keeper insurance, on the other hand, is a type of property insurance that applies to the cost of repairing or restoring physical damage to vehicles. It's like the difference between commercial general liability and commercial property insurance, though in a more specialized sense that is applicable to those who work with vehicles they don't own. Both types of coverage are necessary for comprehensive protection against the costs associated with causing (or allegedly causing) third-party property damage to a customer's automobile.
If you need financial protection against loss that is afforded by the right Calgary mechanic insurance coverage, your friendly insurance broker at Krywolt Insurance is here to assist! Whether you’re in the auto repair business or similar, reach out to us today by calling (403) 879-8660 to speak to a knowledgeable broker. We'll start by consulting with you to find out more about your particular business so we can determine which types of coverage you're most likely to need. We'll then search for the best available coverage to address your unique risk exposures and deliver an insurance quote so you can rest easy knowing you have comprehensive insurance for mechanics in Calgary.