We all know motor insurance is required by law. Courier insurance is required if you work as a courier to deliver goods for hire or reward and your policy will specify this.

As a courier you are delivering and collecting other people’s property, so yes you need insurance.

You should also have insurance for the risks that you pose to other road users and their vehicles.

You will want to insure your work van very much like you insure your private car. If your commercial vehicle is involved in an accident or incident, then courier insurance covers you for any damaged or other liabilities.

If you use your personal vehicle for your courier work your domestic vehicle insurance will not protect your work as a courier, even if you include Class 1 Business use on your policy.

Depending on the nature of the work your courier company does and the type of vehicle that you use there are different types of courier insurance to choose from:

  • Courier Van Insurance cover for up to five vans in the case of loss, damage or theft. There are three levels of cover available: third party only, third party fire and theft and fully comprehensive.
  • Goods in transit insurance will protect you against the loss, theft, or damage of the goods that you are transporting. It is generally advised that couriers should take this insurance. Be sure to check the policy has a high enough claim value to cover the cost of replacing the goods that you are transporting. Some have a maximum cover value for an individual item as well as a total cover limit for the whole load.
  • Public liability insurance Should the worst happen, and you are unfortunate enough to be caught up in an accident involving the public this insurance covers your compensation payments and legal costs. Should a member of the public decide to sue your business because they blame you for their personal injury or their property has been damaged by you this insurance could be a life saver. It is not a legal requirement to have public liability insurance but definitely recommended to protect your business.

If you have employees, you will need to take out Employers’ Liability Insurance; Should someone who works for you become ill or is injured while at work this insurance helps you pay compensation which reduces your exposure and protects your business.

If you’re happy to pay a bit extra, then you can find a policy that will cover the value of any goods locked in your van overnight. Some of the better courier policies also offer a courtesy van for you to use to get back on the road if your usual company vehicle is disabled.

Ask for a discount for having a good driving record or they may offer you an introductory discount if you are an ex-company vehicle driver. If you use an insurance broker, they may be able to find you discount if you are a new courier driver or a new owner driver.

Our advice to you is to read the small print before you buy. Look carefully to see if there are any exclusions or restrictions in the policy.  For example, goods in transit insurance doesn’t always cover items that are damaged as a result of not being properly packaged. Check the excess amount too!