The New York Black Car Operators’ Injury Compensation Fund was created by statute (Chapter 49 of the laws of 1999) to provide Workers' Compensation coverage and other benefits to Black Car operators in the state of New York. The statute was signed into law by Governor George Pataki in May 1999. On October 1, 1999, the billing, collecting and remitting portion of the statute took effect. On January 20, 2000, Workers’ Compensation coverage for drivers affiliated with Member Bases took effect. In later years, our company adopted a shorter title, and while we still have the same official title, we are widely known, simply as The Black Car Fund.
The statute covers all drivers of The Black Car Fund Member Bases in the state of New York, although 98% of the companies are based in the greater New York City Metropolitan area. Bases must become members of The Black Car Fund if they meet the criteria outlined in the statute which states that, more than 90 percent of its for-hire business is on a payment basis other than direct cash payment by a passenger; provided, however, that a central dispatch facility shall not include any such central facility that owns 50 percent or more of the cars it dispatches. Black Car and limousine companies operating outside of New York State are also required to become Member Bases of The Black Car Fund if they do work within the state of New York, as well as if they meet the criteria outlined in the statute. The Fund derives its income from a 2.5% passenger surcharge, added on top of the fare, which is billed and collected by Member Bases from their clients and then remitted to The Fund.
Today, The Fund has nearly 400 Member Bases and collectively, there are more than 130,000 affiliated drivers covered by Workers' Compensation.
What is Workers’ Compensation Insurance?
Workers’ Compensation Insurance provides coverage for an employee who has suffered an injury or illness resulting from job-related duties. Coverage includes medical and rehabilitation costs, as well as lost wages for employees injured on the job.
The for-hire industry’s drivers are independent contractors; however, for the purposes of the state statute, our Member Bases’ affiliated drivers are The Fund’s employees and therefore, are able to be afforded Workers’ Compensation coverage if injured while working.
How does an Operator become a Member Base of The Fund? Bases must become Members of The Fund if they meet the membership criteria outlined in the Statute – meaning they can't own 50% or more of their vehicles and must do 90% or more of their business on a non-cash basis.