Opinion

Harvest time and certificates of currency

Harvest time is without doubt one of the busiest times of the year for many transport operators and when we say transport operator, there are actually two types of transport operators. 

Those that operate 12 months a year and those that drag their old prime mover and maybe a trailer out of the shed, dust of the cob webs, get it passed for rego and put it back to work for 3 months, and thank goodness for these three-months-a-year operators as they fill a vital role during a very busy time of the year and the farmers would be in a world of pain trying to get the crop off in time without everyone chipping in to get the job done.

Whilst we are all busy gearing up for harvest, a critical job that is often easily forgotten is to ensure that all sub-contractors working for you, provide you with a copy of their insurances. 

If they are transport operators the basic insurances they will require are Commercial Motor, Marine Transit, Public Liability & Workers Compensation before they commence work and do not allow them to commence work until such time you are comfortable that they are insured adequately.

We would encourage you to provide the required certificates of currency to your insurance broker to check them for you.

If checking the certificates of currency yourself, bear in mind that each insurers certificate of currency will differ in some way, here are some general tips for some of the things you will need to look for on each certificate.

Commercial Motor:

• Certificate must be on the insurer’s letterhead and signed by the underwriter/insurer

• Insureds name matches the sub-contractors business/trading name and associated entities

• Date the certificate was issued is no more than 14 days old

• Period of cover and will it expire prior to the work be completed 

• Trailer in Control sum insured is adequate and type of trailers covered and radius limit are correct for any trailers owned by you that the sub-contractor has borrowed and will be towing. (Note; Trailer In Control is per item and only for Trailers that are Borrowed, if towing two trailers and a dolly that are borrowed, you may need to have 3 Trailer in Controls)

• If you have a financial arrangement for your equipment between you and a sub-contractor then those items Must be noted on the sub-contractors policy schedule (Leased or hired trailers are not covered under Trailer in Control)

• Ensure the Commercial Motor policy has adequate (Section 2) liability for the work being conducted on your behalf. 

Note: Road registerable vehicles need to carry their own liability as road registerable vehicles are often Excluded under a standard public liability policy. If you believe that you don’t need to insure your truck or trailer because you own it, you would be wrong! You still need to have Section 2 Liability on those items regardless of whether you own it or not.

Marine Transit:

• Certificate must be on the Insurers letterhead and signed by the underwriter/insurer

• Certificate has a policy number

• Insureds name matches the sub-contractors business/trading name and associated entities

• Date the certificate was issued is no more than 14 days old

• Period of cover and will it expire prior to the work be completed 

• Does the certificate stipulate if the policy is comprehensive or defined events – They are different and you will need to determine if defined events will provide adequate cover for your purposes

• Type of freight being carried is appropriate to the freight to be carried and Sum insured is adequate to cover the entire value of the load

• Radius is adequate for the task being undertaken

• Your interest as the Principle Contractor are noted on the Certificate of Currency

(Note: tobacco and alcohol are not always automatically covered under the guise of general freight.)

Public Liability:

• Certificate must be on the Insurers letterhead and signed by the underwriter/insurer

• Certificate has a Policy number

• Insureds name matches the sub-contractors business/trading name and associated entities

• Business description is correct for the industry and work being carried out

• Date the certificate was issued is no more than 14 days old

• Period of cover and will it expire prior to the work be completed 

• Liability limit is adequate to fulfil your contractual agreement

• Have you been noted on the certificate as an interested party for being the principle contractor

Workers Compensation:

• Certificate must be on the Insurers letterhead and signed by the underwriter/insurer

• Certificate has a policy number

• Insureds name matches the sub-contractors business/trading name and associated entities

• Business description is correct for the industry and work being carried out

• Period of cover and will it expire prior to the work be completed 

Requesting certificates of currency before allowing any contractor to commence work on behalf of your business is a very important part of your business responsibilities and ensuring those certificates are adequate for your business operations are equally as important.

We would encourage all operators request a certificate of currency from all sub-contractors that you engage and then follow up with a request for another certificate of currency a month later, ensuring the second certificate of currency is no more than seven days old. 

Unfortunately, some unscrupulous operators will shop around brokers/insurers just to find an insurer whom will provide a certificate of currency before the premium has been paid, and then don’t bother paying the premium for it. 

Simply by requesting a second certificate a month later with a more recent issue date will allow you to weed out the rogue operator. 

Important: All information contained within this article should be considered as General Advice Only. This advice should only be considered as General in Nature and its intent is only to prompt the readers to investigate their own individual insurances. It has been prepared without taking into account the readers own individual objectives, financial situation or needs. Because of that, before acting on the above advice, the client or any persons should consider its appropriateness (having regard to their objectives, needs and financial situation) and seek further independent advice from their own financial advisor.

Important: All answers and information contained within this article should be considered as General Advice Only. This advice should only be considered as General in Nature and its intent is only to prompt the readers to investigate their own individual insurances. It has been prepared without taking into account the readers own individual objectives, financial situation or needs. Because of that, before acting on the above advice, the client or any persons should consider its appropriateness (having regard to their objectives, needs and financial situation) and seek further independent advice from their own financial advisor.

Previous ArticleNext Article

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

©2021 All Rights Reserved. Big Rigs is a registered trademark of Prime Creative Media.

JOIN OUR NEWSLETTER

JOIN OUR NEWSLETTER
Close