Charter Boat Insurance Basics

Maritime law broadly defines the responsibility of charter boat operator as being responsible for all damages resulting from negligence. This all-encompassing definition leaves the operator exposed to the possibility of costly and endless court cases.

This why the value of selecting a charter boat insurance policy which protects your legal rights, property and that ensures damages to your boat are reimbursed, can not be underestimated.

How can you identify which components should be in your policy? First, identify all your business activities and the risks involved in operating your charterboat business. This information will help you decide the types of components, the range, and amount of coverage needed.

Hull and Machinery Clause

This refers to the coverage of the vessel, and all it’s parts. It’s main purpose is to quickly get your business and boat operational after accidents. If you afford to pick a policy, which covers the following damages your charter boat, can sustain:

  • Combustion, sinking or collision of your boat.
  • Deck machinery, boat engines, and electronics.
  • Coverage for an engine that breaks.

However, the following are not included in the hull and machinery component: Damage to your engine due to inappropriate use or neglect, wear due to every day use of the boat or reimbursements because your engine broke down.

Protection and Indemnity (P&I) Clauses

These clauses enable you to pay passengers and other people who could have suffered personal injuries or property damage caused by your vessel.

The basic clauses you should consider are the following:

Coverage limit

How much is your business worth? A wise agent will tell you, the best coverage limit is one that you can get. It does make sense since marine P&I policy covers you on a per incident basis, not for each person.

Shore excursion

If your insurance policy doesn’t have this clause, your passengers are not insured once they get off your boat.

Crew coverage

You must pay coverage for each crew member, or you will be liable for the uninsured crew members’ injuries in the performance of their duties.

Passenger medical payments

A good clause to have, for you’re protected from irate passengers who even if they have suffered minor injuries, will file for big damages.

Personal effects

The loss of clothes, fishing equipment or cameras might seem a minor inconvenience, but not to the passenger who suffered the loss. This clause ensures that you are properly covered and your passenger’s leave happy.

However, talk to your agent so that you know what items are covered in the personal effects clause and if these are appropriate to include.

Remember, the right charter boat insurance policy for you is one that insures both your boat and charter boat business.

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