Do you believe insurance on your home is a good idea? What about life insurance? And auto insurance? If your answer to any of those questions is no, it might be take a while to show you why boating insurance is a good idea. If your answer to all of them is yes, you already know why boating insurance is a good idea. You just may not have thought about your boat in that way.
Life is full of uncertainties. The same can be said of individual life activities like boating. Whether you are thinking about getting a boat for the first time or have had a boat for years, there is a level of probability that you will be involved in an accident at some time. I’m guessing you don’t know what it is. I certainly don’t know what it is. What I do know is that the possible losses in the event of a boating accident are very likely to be far more than you want to deal with. In the event of a boating accident, you could be faced with a multitude of loss categories. Some of them may be things you haven’t even considered. Some of them might be: towing of your boat, loss or damage to your own boat; damage to other boats, docks, houseboats, etc.; physical injuries to yourself or others; loss of personal items on the boat; fuel spill liability; wreckage removal; and the list goes on. Boating insurance provides a way to deal with these losses. Even if your boat is of only modest value and you figure as a worst case scenario you simply wouldn’t replace it in the event it is lost – what would you do if all of the other possible losses occurred?
It is a common error for boat owners to believe that they have protection for their boat under their homeowners insurance. That is typically not the case. In fact the coverage under their homeowners insurance is very limited usually no more than $1,000. It is uncomfortable to think about it, but picture yourself in a boating accident. Think for a minute about the losses I mentioned earlier. Think about how quickly they can add up. How far would $1,000 go? What if the accident isn’t your fault, but your boat was destroyed and you were injured? Unfortunately, the odds make it likely the responsible party is uninsured. You can get uninsured boat coverage.
As with auto insurance or homeowners insurance or life insurance, the premiums may seem like a waste as long as you have no reason to file a claim. In spite of that, I suspect you wouldn’t drop your homeowners insurance just because you haven’t had a claim in 20 years. Your boat is no different. If you are not prepared to absorb the losses out of your own pocket, it is a good idea to plan to cover them with insurance.