WASHINGTON (4/27/15)--As legislation regarding transportation network companies (TNCs) such as Uber, Lyft and Sidecar is being considered in at least 35 states, CUNA is serving as a clearinghouse for expertise, guidance and information regarding TNCs.
CUNA and state leagues are working to ensure the bills contain requirements that drivers have comprehensive and collision insurance for TNC drivers.
Drivers who work for TNCs generally use personal vehicles to perform their duties, which can result in lapses in coverages that can leave drivers uninsured. In addition, the functions of the job can entail increased risky activities by drivers, including transporting strangers, making more stops and dealing with distractions that come with having additional people in a car.
Credit unions, as institutions that make car loans, can be vulnerable as lienholders on the vehicles.
There are three periods of exposure for TNC drivers: when the app is activated, but not matched to a passenger; when a match is made and the driver is en route to pick up the passenger; and when the passenger is being transported.
CUNA and state credit union leagues support legislatoin that would:
Haley DaVee, vice president of governmental affairs at the Kansas Credit Union Association, told News Now that, from the perspective of the credit union industry and the financial services industry, it's very important to get states to pass legislation with the above provisions "to show that there is a need for it, to protect consumers who are driving vehicles that are not properly insured,"
Uber and the insurance industry collaborated on a model bill for states recently, but their model does not contain a requirement for comprehensive and collision insurance.
Recently a TNC bill was enacted in Utah with the assistance of the Utah Credit Union Association, which contains all the items CUNA and the leagues are searching for. In Kansas, the league says a satisfactory bill was vetoed by the governor.
States such as Arkansas, Arizona, Idaho, Kentucky, North Dakota and Virginia have recently enacted TNC legislation that does not require comprehensive and collision coverage.