The pitfalls of not declaring the work that you do


Lots of couriers will, on a day-to-day basis, deliver pallets of goods – e.g. parcels and newspapers – and ferry them from one location to another. Hence, they will be insured on that basis.

Occasionally, though, if you have a van at your disposal, you may be called upon to help with a house move, or you might advertise yourself on social media as a ‘man with a van’ to help pick up large furniture and other packages that do not easily fit in a car. There’s nothing wrong with earning a little money on the side for carrying out such jobs, is there?

The problem arises when you believe that this all part and parcel of the courier work that you do. So you will tell your insurance broker that your job involves carrying packages and doing drop-offs, but fail to mention furniture removals as part of the occasional work that you might do.

What happens if you don’t tell your insurer or broker that you deliver furniture, for example, and you end up having an accident out on the road?

Clearly, if your van is involved in a pile-up and it is loaded full of furniture, then there is a chance that your vehicle might not be insured under your courier van insurance policy, as the vehicle is not being used for the purpose specified. Furthermore, if you have a goods in transit policy, then any damage to the furniture that is being transported is unlikely to be covered, either. If somebody makes a claim against you, it could potentially end your business.

This is where it is important to point out exactly what type of goods you are moving. In dealing with a specialist insurer such as ChoiceQuote, you benefit from using a broker that has access to a range of different insurers and different markets, which in effect means that many different types of goods can potentially be covered, dependent on your specific circumstances.

Importantly, it won’t necessarily cost you a lot of extra money to ensure that you have the right insurance to fit your needs. In some cases, it simply needs an insurer to know about the type of business for it to be covered, rather than actually costing you more money.

Another misconception is that the further the radius from your postcode area your courier van travels, the more expensive your insurance policy is likely to be. In recent times, this has had less bearing on insurance premiums than many believe it will. However, if you are delivering a pallet of goods over 200 miles from home but have only specified that you deliver goods within a 100 mile radius, you have inadvertently limited the area that your insurance might cover you for.

Obviously, the level of insurance you purchase and the policy wording from your insurer needs to be checked carefully. If there is any doubt as to whether or not you might be covered for a particular type of work, it is always worth consulting with your insurance broker.

ChoiceQuote has provided courier insurance for over 20 years now, and their friendly team of expert courier advisers has seen thousands of risks over the years, so can give you the peace-of-mind that you have the cover that you need, without breaking the bank. Contact us on 0800 440 2180, or fill in our online courier insurance quote form and tell us the goods that you carry. If there is more than one type of item that you transport, we will happily advise you on your insurance options, offering the best value insurance to you wherever it is available.

We hope this article was helpful?

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