Navigating the Waters of Marina Insurance
As an independent agent offering various types of marina insurance, many of which your clients may require in order to protect their yacht clubs and marine-based operations, you should discuss with them their need for several forms of coverage to protect against several different exposures that they may face. Obviously a commercial property policy that responds to hazard concerns is vital since it can cover the building, contents, and loss of business income from the customary losses, such as fire, wind, explosion, and vandalism.
They’ll likely benefit from having an inland marine floater to cover mobile property such as radios and golf mobiles, to name some standard equipment. Another important policy is general liability, a very broad coverage that can protect the club from many different types of liabilities to the public, members and visitors to the club’s operations.
Other coverages to consider
Many yacht clubs have a dock with slips available for use by members and their guests. This could possibly present an exposure to clubs since the club has a duty and responsibility to provide a safe and secure mooring. Advise clients to seriously consider a marina operators liability policy that covers boats and marine items of others that are in their care, custody, or control.
Because many of these clubs are located near or on the water and a standard property policy does not include coverage for damage caused by floods, any club located in any flood area should also purchase flood insurance. Inform those interested in coverage that a flood policy only provides coverage to the building and the contents inside and will not cover boats, docks, bulkheads, landscaping or any property outside of the foundation walls of the insured building.
One more marina insurance policy that should be mentioned is commercial automobile insurance. Many clubs have trailers that they use to transport boats to other areas for regattas and other sailing events. The insurance of the owner of the vehicle pulling the trailer generally covers the trailer. But once the trailer is detached from the vehicle, there is no coverage unless the club secures commercial automobile insurance, which can be written to include liability, comprehensive, collision and medical payments coverage.
Finally, the most cost effective way to secure higher limits of liability insurance is by purchasing an umbrella liability policy or the broader bumbershoot liability policy. These policies have a slightly broader insuring agreement and offer broader protection against lawsuits. Help your clients navigate the waters of marina insurance and get the valued protection that they need.