Food Truck Insurance in Florida

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What is Food Truck Insurance?

Owning a business can be an exciting time, and if you have decided on the food truck industry it must mean you love food and serving people. If you own and operate a food truck business you probably already understand that there are potential risks involved. The vast array of things that can happen makes it difficult to list them all, but customers could get injured or food poisoning, and that is just the liability aspect. You also have to think about your actual food truck being damaged, theft, and other liabilities. Food truck insurance is there to provide coverage for all of these risks associated with running your business. From General Liability to Workers Compensation to Commercial Auto, there is a lot of different policies your food truck business will need to be protected properly.

Why Do You Need Food Truck Insurance?

If you decide to set up for your food truck at an event to serve your food to attendees and one of them slips and hits their head on your truck, you can be sued since it is considered your premises. A customer could unintentionally get food poisoning. You probably have procedures in place to ensure that your food is safe and not contaminated, but human errors happen every day. Additionally, an employee of yours could be sick and transfer that to the food without knowing it. You should be prepared for anything so that you can protect your business from losing a ton of money from a lawsuit you didn’t expect.

You also need Food Truck insurance to protect your food truck, as this is the main thing that drives your business. Without it, you will not have anywhere to serve your food to customers, resulting in loss of income. If you are in an accident that damages your truck, you will want to get it fixed as soon as possible and having the insurance coverage for it will make the process smooth and stress-free.

If you have employees there are a lot of insurance policies you need to think about as well. Covering your employees for work-related injuries is important, and often a state requirement. Also, protect your business against claims of wrongful termination and wage issues. All of these unfortunate events have an answer and that is Food Truck insurance. While you may need to purchase several policies to properly protect your food truck business, the investment will be worth it if one of these events does happen.

What are the Licensing Requirements for a Food Truck in Florida?

When it comes to owning and operating a food truck in Florida there are some licensing requirements before you can get started. To get the license called a Mobile Food Dispensing Vehicle License or MFDV, you must fill out an application and pay the fee of $50. In addition to that, there is an annual licensing fee of $347. Be sure to check with your local district and county to determine when the cut-off is to apply and pay for these fees.

What are the Main Coverages You Need to Insure a Food Truck in Florida?

Living in Florida and the desire to own and operate a food truck means there are certain insurance requirements. At the very least you should have the following insurance policies in place to begin your operations.

  • Commercial Auto – More than likely before you even drive your food truck off the lot you will have to provide proof of Auto insurance. You will need to have Commercial Auto since you will be generating an income from the vehicle. It will cover the physical damage to the truck including glass breakage and collision, in addition to bodily injury to others and property damage. If you are at fault in an accident it will pay to fix whatever you hit, up to the limit on your policy. Keep in mind that since it is a bigger vehicle, the damage if you are at fault could be extensive so it is crucial to make sure you have a high enough limit that you don’t end up having to dip into your profits. At a minimum, you will be required to carry $300,000 in combined limits for most certificates of insurance required by event hosts and counties.
  • General Liability or Business Owners Policy – Liability insurance is essential since you are dealing with the public. Lawsuits can arise out of the craziest situations, but General Liability will provide coverage for bodily injury and property damage. Since you should also cover your other business personal property, the most efficient way to get both of these important coverages is by purchasing a Business Owners policy. A Businessowners insurance policy will bundle together General Liability and Commercial Property coverages to save some money for you, rather than purchasing the policies separately. And don’t forget, General Liability will also cover your defense costs, which can add up quickly.
  • Workers Compensation – Regardless of industry and size, every employer in the state of Florida is required to carry Workers Compensation insurance. Working with food that needs to be cooked, cut, and served can increase the risk of an employee becoming hurt on the job. Also, if they get sick on the job you will be required to pay for their medical bills. Workers Compensation coverage will pay the employee’s lost wages when they are unable to work. Having this coverage helps to retain good employees that have an unfortunate incident since they will still be able to support their families.

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What Additional Insurances for a Food Truck Should You Consider?

As a food truck business owner, even if you purchase all of the above-mentioned policies, there could still be potential gaps in coverage. Make sure your business and your wallet are protected by considering these additional vital insurance policies.

  1. Commercial Umbrella – Having an extra limit of liability that sits over the top of your General Liability, Commercial Auto Liability, and Employers’ Liability can save you big time if you end up in court. For example, if you have the minimum required limit of $300,000 and a judgment is made for $400,000 where will you get that extra $100,000? Keep in mind it only takes one claim to do this, but it is even more important to have Umbrella Liability if you have the unfortunate experience of having multiple claims within a policy period.
  2. Product Liability – Food poisoning and food-borne allergies or illness is a real risk with any business that deals with food. Even if it is through no fault of your own, you will be held liable if a lawsuit arises from someone claiming they got sick from your food.
  3. Business Interruption – If your food truck is damaged, or refrigeration system breaks down and you are unable to operate your business for a while you will lose out on the income you would normally generate. Business Interruption insurance can provide this income until you get back up and running. Usually, it will be for a specific time, so make sure you are prepared to get back up and running soon.
  4. Cyber Liability – Taking credit card payments these days can be risky, with hackers and data breaches being a prevalent issue. Protect your business by purchasing a Cyber Liability policy, that will not only pay for damages but help to protect, or restore, your business's reputation.
  5. Employment Practices Liability – With lawsuits arising every day against employers for things like wrongful termination, wage discrepancies, discrimination, and harassment it is more important than ever to have protection for this. Employment Practices Liability insurance will provide coverage for these allegations and pay for the defense costs associated with them. You will hopefully never have to deal with this situation if you have proper procedures in place, but it is better to be safe than sorry.

While this list of insurance policies may make you worried about the cost, keep in mind that insurance is an investment to protect your business and should be treated as that, and not a burden. You can prepare yourself by knowing what factors the insurance company will consider when calculating the cost. Some of these factors include:

  • Food - The type of food you serve will impact the price, as some are riskier than others.
  • Location - Where you are conducting business will certainly matter, with more risk being associated with a high crime are versus a suburb.
  • Value - The value of your doo truck and the items in it, including the food, will have an impact on the price. Serving seafood will have more value than pizza. Keep this in mind when deciding on your business.
  • Claims - If you have any claims history, including accidents in your personal vehicle, this can be a negative factor and cause your insurance premiums to be higher. Keep a clean record and you will be rewarded by saving money.
  • Deductible - A lot of your insurance policies will have a deductible. The higher the deductible the lower the premium, since you are assuming more of the risk. However, make sure you will be able to pay this amount in the event of a claim.

Business Insurance

Running a business is challenging enough without having to worry about lawsuits, employee injuries or property damage. Having the right insurance gives you the peace of mind to focus on what matters - running your business.

The coverage you need depends on the type of business you run. A restaurant owner needs to be covered against customers possibly getting food poisoning while an accountant needs to be covered against calculation errors. CoverWallet's intelligent assessment system will identify the insurance you need based on your specific business, get you a policy that fits your budget, and do it all in less time than you think.

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