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The right way to protect volunteer drivers…and your organization’s own insurance program

If you are like most nonprofit organizations, you have carefully considered the amount of liability insurance you need and can afford. Let’s say that limit is $1,000,000. In choosing that limit, you believe it should be sufficient to address the most likely kinds of unexpected liability incidents that may arise. You — and in many cases your board of directors — know that a loss much greater than this would be devastating. It may even shutter your operations. Like nearly all nonprofits who depend on volunteers to help carry out your mission, you wanted to protect your volunteers from a liability claim they might incur while working on your organization’s behalf – including driving on your behalf.

What you probably have not considered as closely as you should is the impact including volunteers as insureds under your auto liability policy could have on your organization’s ability to defend itself.

The smarter, wiser approach is to insure your volunteers separately, and in doing so assure that your organization’s carefully chosen limits of liability are preserved and therefore available to defend and to protect your organization and your employed staff. By insuring your volunteers separately, you offer them protection just as broad – and in some cases, broader – than the organization’s own coverage. And the coverage is available to them and them alone, just as your coverage is available to you and you alone.

The cost?

It’s $7.45 per volunteer per year. So if you have, for example, 25 volunteers who use their own vehicles on their assignments, the total premium to cover them all would be less than $200 a year. With our membership and administration fee of $140, the total cost to insure 25 volunteer drivers is less than $350 a year. So, for the price of a movie ticket, you can provide additional limits of auto liability protection that could prevent a volunteer’s having a significant, and maybe disastrous, out-of-pocket loss.

Here is a link to our online application on the Website of The CIMA Companies, the administrator of our volunteer insurance program — Your exact cost is computed automatically for you, when you put in the number of volunteers you want to insure for excess auto liability.

If you would like to talk to a human about the program, Jennifer Yarnell or Vicki Brooks would love to hear from you. They are at 800.222.8920, Monday through Friday.

By the way, in addition to excess auto liability insurance, we also offer accident coverage in case your volunteers are injured, and volunteer liability coverage in case volunteers accidentally injure someone or damage someone’s property in activities other than driving. All the information is at