There are probably very few times when you can mess up badly, forget to do something very important, make a genuine mistake, do something really stupid or thoroughly miscalculate a situation… and then not have to suffer the consequences. boat
Perhaps somewhat surprisingly for many people, when it comes to your boat and marine insurance, if you have the right policy with the right insurer, you can simply relax after things go pear-shaped.
Provided all the usual provisos have not been contravened – such as you being under the influence of drugs or alcohol at the time, that you were breaking the law at the time or that you did this damage deliberately – then the chances are that sorting out repairs becomes the next task.
It merely becomes a case of, “This is when and how things went wrong, this is the result of what happened, where do we go from here?”
And the response from a specialist marine insurer such as Nautilus Marine Insurance will be, “Right, let’s start working through the process and get you back on the water as soon as we can.”
So, if you miss that attempt at driving the trailer up at the boat ramp and then make things worse in your efforts to bail out of the missed retrieve… relax.
As one marine insurance executive remarked, “Yes, we do insure against stupidity.”
Driving up the boat ramp with your outboard leg down in the trimmed in position is a fairly stupid thing to do – but it’s covered.
Not updating the data on your plotter when channels and sandbanks are constantly changing is a foolish practice – but it’s covered.
Smacking into a reef that hasn’t moved one centimetre in the past few thousand years is not a pleasant experience – but it’s covered.
Understandably, repeat offenders cannot automatically expect that specialist insurers will continue to keep paying out for their repairs.
And soon they’re going to have a difficult time finding someone to insure them.
But the good news is that for the majority of boaties who have signed up with a specialist marine insurer, the insurer will have heard, seen or dealt with a similar issue before.
Yes, you’ll still have to live with the embarrassment if it was a particularly unfortunate sort of accident, but other than the excess or any other provisions in your insurance policy, there is a way to redeem the costs.
It’s important to understand that you need to have adequate insurance cover in the first instance and that there may well be requirements on you to ensure that you continue to document the current true value of your boat and equipment.
Check whether your current coverage is for an ‘agreed value’ or for a ‘market value’ where the amount of cover is reduced as the vessel becomes older.
Market value is the figure specialist boat retailers and other appropriately qualified marine experts would regard as a fair price for your boat.
While it may be a lower figure than you paid for the boat three years ago, it reflects a fair value for your vessel in today’s market.
Conversely ‘agreed value’ is the price jointly nominated by you and your specialist marine insurer.
If you bought a new rig today from a franchised boat retailer, the agreed value in terms of insurance would most probably be the amount of money you paid for the boat before towing it out of the dealership.
As always, what is and what may not be covered will always be decided in accord with the terms of insurance as defined in your insurance policy’s Product Disclosure Statement.
That’s why it is so important to read it thoroughly and to note any special conditions and excesses which should be explained clearly in your PDS.
If you need further information, you can contact Nautilus Marine Insurance on 1300 780 533 for any boat insurance requirements.