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Marine Insurance Explained

Many people look to get a boat insurance policy to cover their water vessel in the event of an accident. These same people may well be inadequately covered in the event of a claim as they should have sought a marine insurance policy. It typically covers all the cargo within the boat not covered by standard boat insurance. Most marine insurance policies provide extensive coverage of cargo to both commercial and one-off carriers of cargo that specifically is being transported over water.

Boa cover is actually the oldest form of insurance in the world since the transportation of cargo using water vessels for trade has been operational for hundreds of years. Nowadays, pirates are less common but the world's waterways are still hazardous.

Who is a potential candidate?

A marine policy is an option for anyone transporting possessions by boat or other watercraft. Due to the nature of basic boat insurance, only a small percentage of cargo is covered in the event of an accident or damage. It provides peace of mind to the carrier that they will not be liable for any accidents in transit.

The other group of people who need marine insurance are people who are sharing a ship container to transport their goods across water. They are individually liable for their goods and the carrier is not liable.

What typically does it cover?

Marine insurance typically covers the accidental damage or theft of goods transported by sea. Coverage also extends to warehouses where cargo is kept in the interim period, loading and unloading of cargo and coverage can also extend door to door depending on the provider.

Coverage basically includes damage to property caused by fire, theft, sinking, capsizing and grounding or any event that causes non-delivery of cargo. Damage caused in other circumstances may need extra coverage.

What typically does it not cover?

Damage to your cargo due to inadequate packing is rarely covered. If you are getting a third party to transport your cargo, get that same third party to pack your cargo for you. If they are a registered removal firm then they should have insurance that covers your items in the event of damage caused by poor packing.

Marine insurance also has exclusions placed on it based on the nature of the cargo. Dangerous items like firearms and ammunition aren't normally covered. Fuel, chemicals and other combustible materials aren't normally covered items. Some exclusions depend on the country of transportation and local quarantine laws. This may mean animals; timber, food and other similar items are not covered.

Additional coverage that policy holders might take out in this area

Marine protection is the only policy you can take out that will cover your cargo in the event of damage during transit over water. Other policies will only cover damage while on land or in your possession.

In addition, to the basic coverage offered by a typical marine policy, you can extend your protection to include damage to your property by water damage, loss of cargo overboard not causing by malfunctioning vessel or negligence. General breakages are normally only covered by the most comprehensive form of marine insurance.

What will it typically cost?

The price can cost between 1% and 4% of the value of the insured cargo. The percentage is determined by the level of cover and the distance the cargo travels. As this type of policy is a high earner for insurance companies and there is a lot of competition for business, you can find that your percentage is negotiable.

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