The gig economy covers all sorts of professions, but the one that people focus on the most when they hear that term is the specific field of independent-contractor driving, such as rideshare and delivery. There are a lot of misconceptions about the field, including on the part of new drivers who aren't used to being independent contractors. They may be used to companies providing everything for employees and are shocked to find that companies like Lyft and Uber don't really do that.
Insurance has been a particular sticking point because the lines between when people were driving for the companies versus just being in their own cars were fuzzy at first. It's gotten easier to figure out which insurance coverage you have and when, but that still doesn't mean you're fully covered. You need to look into the options available if you want to drive for these companies.
Additional Occupational Insurance
You have to have your own insurance policy to cover your own car, to begin with, but most personal coverage does not extend to business use. So, if you're driving for Lyft, your own insurance might not cover you if you have an accident while waiting for a good request to come through on the company's app. Getting a commercial driving policy that covers occupational use and accidents/liability is an option if your own policy won't cover any commercial use.
Sometimes you luck out and find that your own car insurance is through a company that offers gap coverage. This covers the "gap" that exists between what your own policy covers and what the ridesharing companies offer for those times when you're actively driving. You don't need a whole different policy, and because the gap coverage should be attached to your regular car insurance, you should be able to simplify billing and payment for both. Because that gap differs for each rideshare service (especially if you branch out into delivery and not just ridesharing), you need to ensure you know exactly when that gap coverage is in effect.
Most ridesharing services offer a form of coverage for when you're actively driving for them, such as when you have a Lyft passenger in the car when driving for Lyft. (Delivery companies typically don't offer this coverage.) Take a look at the coverage and speak with your insurance company. Find out if you can supplement that coverage with more of your own (from the commercial or gap policies) if the coverage seems inadequate for your region or for the amount of driving you do.
Don't get into trouble with your insurance company or the police. Ensure you have coverage for all of the times you're using your car. Contact an agent to discuss Lyft driver insurance.