Boat insurance is a must for anyone who owns a boat or yacht. It protects your investment from damage caused by an accident, theft, or natural disaster. Learn more about what boat and yacht insurance covers.
What Is Boat Insurance?
Boat insurance is a type of policy that protects the boat and its owner, crew, passengers, and other accessories. The policy may be purchased for a single trip or an entire season. It can be purchased from a broker or directly from an insurer.
Boat insurance is different from auto and homeowner’s insurance which most of us are familiar with. A boat insurance policy ensures that you are protected financially in the event of an accident, which can help prevent financial stress on top of dealing with the emotional impact of a collision or crash.
What Does It Cover?
Let’s take a look at what boat and yacht insurance covers.
If your boat is damaged due to weather or other accidents, physical damage coverage can help with the cost of repairs. Physical damage is the most common type of coverage, and it covers physical damage to your boat brought on by fires, collisions, storms, theft, and other incidents.
Physical damage coverage generally pays for repairs to your boat that are necessary as a result of damage caused by a wide range of perils. The best policies provide “all risk” coverage, which means that if the cause of loss is not specifically excluded, it is covered.
Boat owners have the responsibility to maintain their boats, so normal wear and tear is often excluded under a boat or yacht policy. The number and type of physical damage exclusions vary from company to company, so take the time to compare to avoid surprises later.
Liability insurance is your legal responsibility to pay for the damage or loss of property, injuries, and/or death that you cause while using a boat or yacht. It helps cover the costs if you get sued and found liable for an accident on your vessel (even if it’s not your fault).
The liability section of a comprehensive boat insurance policy provides many coverages that are important to boat owners. If you are in a collision that causes an oil spill, you are liable for the cleaning up of the wreckage and the spill. Your boat or yacht insurance policy must cover your liability for any clean-up expenses because vessel owners are liable under the Oil Pollution Act of 1990.
Practicing boat safety is important. But in case someone gets injured on your boat, you should verify that your policy has an adequate limit of coverage for medical payments. Medical payments coverage pays for any medical attention costs that may result from someone being injured on your boat during an accident.
It is important to check whether the coverage also applies while someone is boarding or leaving the boat, and while being towed behind your boat, such as while water skiing. Check to make sure that injuries to you and your family are also included in this coverage.
An uninsured boater is someone operating a boat who does not have enough insurance to pay out your claim. Since boat liability insurance is not mandatory, many boaters are operating without liability coverage. Without this insurance, if they have an accident and cause damage, they may not be able to cover the cost of the repairs.
Due to the possibility of having a collision with an uninsured boater, it is recommended that you purchase uninsured boater insurance if your boat insurance policy does not offer this type of coverage.
Many boat insurance policies have exclusions, which just means that if certain conditions are met, you will not be covered for damages despite having an insurance policy. Some of the exclusions are as follows:
- Damage Caused By Animals
- Damage Outside A Certain Area
- Defective Equipment
- Wear And Tear
It’s always better to be safe than sorry. Review your insurance policies and, if in doubt, contact a boat insurance attorney to help you get clarity on what you’re covered for.
Speak to the Experts
If you’re a boat or yacht owner, ensure that you have boat insurance and that your policy covers the basics. Most insurance policies should provide coverage for physical damage, liability insurance, medical payments, and uninsured boaters.
If your policy is unclear about coverage, contacting a boat insurance lawyer will spare you a lot of money in the future. Here at Klotzman Property Damage Law, we advocate for fair compensation so you can properly restore and repair any damage.
Schedule your free case review today with our Hollywood property damage attorneys. When insurance companies fail, Klotzman Property Damage Law succeeds.