What are the potential consequences of not having boat insurance? First of all, any damage you accidentally cause to your own watercraft will be 100% on you. You either pay in full to fix it or live with it staying damaged.
Second, you won’t have any coverage for medical expenses incurred when either you or your passengers are injured in a boating accident. Your health insurance may still help, but you miss out on the extra coverage and end up paying more out of pocket.
Third, you risk liability for personal injury and/or property damage you cause to others and their boat or other property. That can easily run in the thousands or tens of thousands of dollars range even for relatively minor incidents.
Fourth and finally, there are many other specialized types of coverage that you won’t have. For example, boat trailer insurance, motor insurance, and protection against fire, theft, vandalism, and weather events will all be missing.
What If Other Boaters Lack Insurance?
But that’s only half the story. There’s another reason why you need to ensure your boat is insured – because others may fail to buy boat insurance or enough of it. If you get into a collision with an uninsured boater, you could have a hard time collecting fair compensation, regardless of whose fault it was.
Just like you can buy uninsured and underinsured insurance riders with auto insurance, you can do the same with boat insurance. Uninsured watercraft insurance will help pay for injuries or property damage caused by an uninsured boater. Otherwise, your regular boat insurance coverage will take care of it. It doesn’t cost much to add this kind of protection, and in the relevant situations, it can save you a lot of money and a big headache.
Your own policy’s liability coverage will pay, up to the limits of the policy, if you are at fault in an accident with an uninsured boater. But when the uninsured boater is at fault, your uninsured watercraft rider will kick in and help cover expenses.
Can Boat Insurance Be Affordable?
Many people who love to fish or cruise in Florida’s numerous rivers, lakes, canals, and other waterways are afraid that insuring their vessel may simply cost too much. But that doesn’t have to be the case.
There are many ways you can lower your premiums, including by using a newer, safer boat, passing a boating safety course, accepting a higher deductible, and pausing coverage while your boat is in storage during the winter.
The risks of not insuring your boat are too great, while the benefits of doing so are substantial. A well thought out boat insurance policy that fits your boat, your usage patterns, and your budget can save you money and give you peace of mind.
To learn more about getting your vessel insured, including against other boaters who aren’t insured, contact Flagler County Insurance Agency today! We can give you a free consultation and a free quote!