To drive for Lyft, you must meet certain Lyft driver requirements. While drivers are independent contractors, Lyft has strict requirements to ensure everyone’s safety.
Getting approved is simple; if you pass, you can begin driving immediately.
Lyft Driver Requirements All Drivers Must Meet – No Exceptions!
Lyft has driver requirements to ensure the safety of its customers.
They must ensure all drivers can legally drive in the city/state they live in and that all drivers can pass a background check, so a record of reckless driving or a felony makes an applicant ineligible.
Here is what Lyft requires.
1. Documentation Requirements for Drivers
To prove you can drive for Lyft, you must provide them with specific documentation that shows you are legally allowed to drive.
Of course, you must provide proof of a current and valid license. You must also renew your license on time to continue driving for Lyft once approved.
Some states require at least one year of driving experience to be able to drive for Lyft, including:
Valid Plates and Insurance
Your car must have a valid license plate and sticker. If you rent a car, the registration doesn’t have to be in your name; however, you must have insurance in your name that proves you’re insured to drive the car.
Depending on where you live, your name may not be required to be printed on the insurance card. However, if it isn’t, you must provide a declaration page from your insurance with your name on it to prove you’re insured to drive the car.
At a minimum, you must have personal auto insurance with at least the state’s minimum requirements to drive for Lyft. However, if you want comprehensive collision coverage from Lyft when driving for them, you must first have comprehensive, and collision insurance on your personal policy.
2. Driver Background Checks
In addition to the documentation you must provide, Lyft will require a background and driving record history check.
Standard Background Check
The background check is the longest part of the application process, which can take a few weeks. To start the background check, you must provide your Social Security number and provide permission for the third-party Checkr to conduct the background screening.
Lyft uses the information from your background check to determine if you’re eligible to drive. Certain issues on your background check may exclude you from driving. If any of the following applies to you, you might not qualify:
- On the National Sex Offender Registry Database
- Committed a violent crime
- Committed an act of terror
- Have a DUI in the last seven years
- Committed sexual assault
- Committed theft in the last seven years
- Had a drug-related arrest in the last seven years
- Committed fraud in the last seven years
Standard Driving Record History Check
Lyft also runs a DMV check through Safety Holdings, Inc. They check the last seven years for DUIs, driving while high, or serious driving infractions, such as hit-and-runs or felonies with a vehicle. These incidents would disqualify you from driving for Lyft.
They also go back three years on your driving record, looking for four or more moving violations or a single major incident, such as reckless driving, that would disqualify you.
3. Appropriate Age Per Your State
Lyft’s minimum age and your state/city’s minimum age to drive for a rideshare company may differ. For example, Lyft’s minimum age is 21; however, most states require drivers to be at least 25 years old to drive for Lyft.
4. Completion of Lyft’s Community Safety Education Program
Lyft takes safety seriously and requires all Lyft drivers to take the Lyft Community Safety Education Program. This program helps drivers learn how to deal with unique situations that might put everyone’s lives in danger.
Why These Requirements Are Necessary for Lyft
Lyft must ensure all drivers are safe, can legally drive, and haven’t had any infractions that would put anyone’s safety at risk.
Even though you need a driver’s license to drive, that’s not enough. Lyft must do its due diligence to ensure the drivers they pay and trust with their clients are good humans who follow the law and are eligible to drive clients to their destinations.
Before applying for Lyft, there are some factors to consider.
1. Be Prepared Before Applying
Before applying to drive for Lyft, consider gathering all the necessary documents. You’ll upload these documents to your dashboard for Lyft to evaluate, so having everything together can eliminate unnecessary back and forth.
To apply, have the following documents ready:
- Your driver’s license
- A copy of your insurance card or insurance declarations page
- Proof of vehicle registration with a current sticker
- A driver profile photo
- Consent to do a background check; supply your Social Security number
2. The Differences Across State Lines
Each state has different requirements for Lyft drivers. Lyft has basic requirements, but they also follow all state and city laws.
In all states, you must have a valid driver’s license and auto insurance. The age requirements may vary by state, though. For example, most states now require Lyft drivers to be 25 years old, but those that don’t may allow drivers as young as 21 years old to drive for Lyft.
As of the latest regulations, Lyft drivers are not required to wear a mask while driving, nor are riders. However, anyone who feels more comfortable wearing a mask, including drivers, may do so.
4. Phone Requirements
All Lyft drivers must have a smartphone to download the app, make themselves available, and accept rides. The Lyft app connects riders and drivers and provides drivers with many features to run their business, including safety features should they need to call for help fast.
To qualify, you must have a smartphone with cellular and internet service. In addition, it must run at least iOS 13 or Android 7.0 Nougat and have enough storage to download and run the app.
Lyft leaves the uniform choices up to drivers. Since you’re an independent contractor, they don’t tell you what to wear. However, if you want to increase your tips and ratings, it’s best to dress business casual to provide a comfortable experience for your riders.
Applying to Be a Lyft Driver
To apply to drive for Lyft, you can complete the application here or within the app. You must upload the necessary documents, including your driver’s license, car registration, auto insurance, and profile photo.
Lyft will run a background and driving check with your approval, and once approved, Lyft will send you a Lyft emblem to place on your window, and you’re set to drive for Lyft.
Frequently Asked Questions
It’s easy to qualify for Lyft, but you may still have some questions. Check out the following questions from people like you!
Can I have a personal passenger in the car while driving a customer?
Lyft depends on its drivers to provide a professional experience, which means you should not have any personal passengers with you on rides. Likewise, you shouldn’t have anyone else in your car when you’re waiting for a ride request. If anyone else is in the car, they aren’t necessarily vetted by Lyft, which could risk the safety of passengers.
What are disqualifying factors that will keep someone from driving for Lyft?
Lyft is generous with its driver requirements; however, there are certain issues they cannot overlook, such as felonies, DUIs, driving while high, hit-and-runs, or excessive moving violations.
Can you deny rides as a Lyft driver?
You can deny rides as a Lyft driver as you are in charge of your business. However, Lyft has an acceptance rate that calculates the rides you’ve accepted and completed. Declined requests count in this calculation, but if a rider cancels the request, it doesn’t affect your rating.
Lyft Driver Requirements: The Bottom Line
Keep in mind that in addition to its initial background checks, Lyft subscribes to ongoing monitoring of its drivers’ driving records to watch out for any new infractions.
These Lyft driver requirements are in place to keep everyone safe. They aren’t complicated, and as long as you have a valid license and insurance, are of the age required in your state, and maintain a clean driving record, driving for Lyft may be right for you.