The existence of a valet parking service usually causes an unspecified number of vehicles to be within the “care, custody, and control” of the association. Physical damage to these vehicles while in the association’s care creates perpetual expenses for deductibles, premiums, costs of adjustments, etc.
An additional form of insurance, Garagekeepers’ Legal Liability coverage, is necessary. This coverage is already in effect for you.
Garagekeepers’ Legal Liability insurance is almost always written with significant deductibles that apply per vehicle. In addition, the premium for this coverage tends to be expensive and premiums have recently experienced dramatic increases. Even the use of larger deductibles has not greatly offset these increases.
Under your current circumstances, it appears that the association would have to perpetually fund the following expenses:
- Premiums for Garagekeepers’ Legal Liability coverage.
- The annual aggregate value of deductible expenses incurred.
- Loss adjustment expenses in the uninsured/deductible area.
- Possible catastrophic loss exceeding the limits of insurance purchased.
It should also be realized that the cost of Garagekeepers’ Legal Liability insurance would also have to include a loading for profit. Additionally, any adverse loss experience that might develop under this form of coverage could have an adverse effect on the otherwise applicable premiums for other essential coverages that the association must carry.
We can appreciate the benefits of a valet parking service; however, the consequences of owning and providing such a service can be both troublesome and expensive. And there is a relatively simple way of avoiding this exposure, thereby eliminating the need to increase monthly fees to fund the expenses mentioned above. We suggest an amendment to your master instruments to the effect that each unit owner would automatically waive his/her right of recovery against the association.
The results of such a waiver would be that each unit owner would then rely only on his/her own personal automobile physical damage coverages. In this way, there would be no expense to the association and the unit owner would incur only the loss of whatever deductible applies on his/her Personal Automobile policy. Since a given unit owner would incur this expense only on the occasion of an accident involving his/her own vehicle, the cost should be much less than a perpetual monthly assessment to all unit owners.
Valet parking, as respects guests, visitors, and other non-unit owners, must then also be considered.