Insurance coverage while plowing your driveway

   #1  

oosik

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I was reading the posts on JDGeen's thread (Clearing a public intersection) and it got me to thinking. My property is one mile off the paved county road. My driveway from the county road to my property is built on a 32 foot wide by one mile long easement granted by my neighbor along the edge of his property. The easement has been notarized and recorded. So in other words, the sole access to my property is via a driveway I paid to have constructed on the neighbors land. There is no problem with ever loosing this access - it runs with the land & has the necessary provisions to pass on to my successors, heirs, assigns etc, etc.

The concern comes when I read so many posts where the insurance company will not cover the tractor when its used off your property. Well, maintenance of my driveway is one of the major uses of my tractor.

Fortunately, the insurance company said that as long as I have permission from the neighbor to build the driveway they will extend the insurance to cover the tractor while I use it on the driveway.
It might be worth while for others in similar situations to check this out with their insurance company. Better to find out before coverage is needed.
 
   #2  

KubotaToy

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My homeowners insurance would cover my tractor with a rider to my current insurance but would not off property or during any transportation, only covered where my primary residence is located, so I purchased specific insurance on the tractor itself that covers it no matter the location as long as I am not using it for commercial purposes. I have several properties I maintain from time to time and was the only insurance that would cover it. I also maintain a pretty large liability insurance policy to protect my family if I do something that ends up getting me held liable.

BTW- you caused me to review my homeowners policy to see how they define covered property, they do not, so I would argue it covers the driveway (easement or not) since maintaining your driveway is part of maintaining your property.
 
   #3  

Pirate

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Hum. This has me wondering because I let my neighbor borrow my tractor for a couple small jobs on his property. Am I opening myself up for a big problem doing that?
 
  
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#4  
OP
oosik

oosik

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Kubota Toy - I would agree, driveway maintenance is part of property maintenance. However, I do not want to get into a p***ing match with my insurance co when, at the same time, I'm trying to get them to cover something. Better to find out and make adjustments as necessary, before hand.

Because my homeowners policy does not cover my tractor - off property - I have NEVER allowed anybody to borrow my tractor. I do go off property and do odd jobs for neighbors but I'm overly cautious in these situations. I sure do not want to loose all I got here after 32+ years to some stupid liability lawsuit.

And believe me, the vultures are standing in the wings - just waiting.
 
   #5  

Jstpssng

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My tractor has full coverage, on the same commercial policy as my pickup, from back when I was self employed. I pay 136$/year.
 
   #6  

TCowner

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The same issue came up for me many years ago when I had home owner's insurance with State Farm. I was reviewing my policy with the agent who made it clear that coverage only included tractor use on my property. When I asked the specific question regarding snow removal at the end of the driveway the agent stated that the portion of the driveway that is deemed the right of way would not be covered. If I was plowing or blowing snow on the right of way portion of the driveway and was involved in an accident with a motor vehicle my liability coverage would not cover nor any physical damage to the tractor. He also made it clear that transporting the tractor on a trailer to and from the dealership for repair or service is not covered.

The only way they would cover any use on the public right of way, including transporting on a trailer, was to create a separate policy on the specific tractor and insure much like any vehicle. This meant of course a cost of about $500 every six months.

I was able to find an insurance company that covered my property with a farm policy so that my tractor and all of the other equipment needed to maintain the property is included. It ended up costing about another $100.00 per year but provides liability coverage when on the public right of way as well as transporting on my trailer.

I darned near needed to use the coverage a year ago when I was mowing the bottom of my road ditch when a drunk driver lost control and went by me, in the ditch, at 60 mph missing me by about 3 feet. That is a wake up call for sure. He sheared off my mailbox post as he launched over the driveway and eventually ended up crossing the highway and ending up in the ditch on the other side.
 
   #7  

RedNeckGeek

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TC, would you mind sharing the name of the company that issued your farm policy? All this talk about insurance has peaked my curiosity...
 
   #8  

dmccarty

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This is one of the issues where you have to talk to the Insurance company and read the policy.

We had to get a separate policy for the tractor since the home owners policy would not cover the tractor. That policy does cover us off property as long as we are not doing commercial work. If I take pay for the work, I am not covered at all. Further more we have an umbrella policy for more coverage. Neither policy costs very much.

Later,
Dan
 
   #9  

Humblebub

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This will sound moderately harsh. I am an insurance broker and practicing this black craft for 45 years. I tell people my job is to help them select the least worst insurance comfpany. There was a time when I had confidence that insurance companies would do the right thing. That time is long past. My advice is to explain the situation (exactly), in writing and demand a response in writing. I do not have confidence in advice from the insurance company as many employees do not understand the product they provide. Similarly I am seeing incorrect advice given by insurance brokers or agents. If you have it in writing you will have recourse. Many insurance companies consider tractors under 25 hp to be contents in the physical damage component of coverage is provided by your contents insurance. The same applies to liability when used for personal purposes. Keep in mind that each state has different regulations and each insurance company may have different policy terms. I encourage you to get something in writing.
 
  
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#10  
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oosik

oosik

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I agree Humblebub. Fortunately, my concerns/questions and my insurance co's response are in writing and tucked away safely with my policy.
 
 
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