Aviva Canada to Launch Ride-Sharing Insurance for UberX in February

The contentious issue of proper insurance for UberX drivers will change next month, as Aviva Canada has announced this morning it will launch ride-sharing insurance coverage, starting in February.

Coverage will become available for drivers in Ontario early next month, as a “simple addition” to an Aviva-insured personal automobile policy. The company says it will be working with regulators nationwide to offer coverage in other provinces in the coming months.

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Greg Somerville, President and CEO of Aviva Canada, said in a statement “With ride-sharing on the rise, consumers have new options available to them, however there is a gap in insurance coverage which potentially leaves them without appropriate protection and benefits. When consumer needs change, we must evolve our insurance solutions to respond.”

Aviva Canada says ride-sharing coverage will apply to drivers for services like UberX “from the moment they initiate looking for passengers through to collecting and dropping off those passengers.”

Simple underwriting criteria examples such as maximum of eight passengers, licensed for a minimum of six years, no other commercial use, etc., will be used to determine driver eligibility. Coverage will apply for up to 20 hours per week, with additional coverage possible.

Doug Heaman, Insurance Brokers Association of Ontario (IBAO) President, said they were “pleased to see an insurance company taking a proactive stance in the ride-sharing space.”

Taxi drivers across Canada have protested UberX where it operates, claiming the service undercuts traditional cab companies, lacks proper insurance and necessary training and licenses to carry passengers. Looks like Aviva Canada’s coverage could put the insurance debate to rest.

Last month, Uber Canada revealed it now serves over 500,000 regular Canadian users.

Founder and Editor-in-Chief of iPhoneinCanada.ca. Follow me on Twitter, and @iPhoneinCanada, and on Google+.