As a contractor, your equipment and tools are essential to your business. Whether you work in construction, transportation, or any other industry that requires the use of valuable assets, it’s crucial to protect them from potential risks. This is where inland marine insurance comes into play.
What is Inland Marine Insurance?
Inland marine insurance is a type of coverage that protects your business assets while they are being transported over land. Contrary to its name, inland marine insurance has nothing to do with insuring ships or watercraft. Instead, it focuses on safeguarding property that is movable or in transit.
Why is it called “Inland Marine”?
The term “inland marine” originated from the early days of insurance when it primarily covered goods transported via ships. Over time, the coverage expanded to include property transported via land, and the name stuck.
What Does Inland Marine Insurance Cover?
Inland marine insurance covers a wide range of property and equipment used by contractors. This includes tools, machinery, construction materials, and even portable electronic devices. The coverage extends to incidents such as theft, damage, vandalism, and accidents during transportation.
Does Inland Marine Insurance Only Cover Transportation?
No, inland marine insurance also covers property that is stored temporarily at job sites or in warehouses. It provides protection against risks like fire, water damage, and theft while the property is not in transit.
Why Do Contractors Need Inland Marine Insurance?
Contractors heavily rely on their equipment and tools to complete projects efficiently. The loss or damage of these assets can lead to significant financial setbacks. Inland marine insurance offers the following benefits:
1. Comprehensive Coverage
Inland marine insurance provides coverage for a wide range of risks, giving contractors peace of mind knowing their assets are protected in various scenarios.
Contractors can customize their policies to match their specific needs. They can choose coverage for individual items or opt for blanket coverage that protects multiple assets under a single policy.
3. Cost Savings
By having inland marine insurance, contractors can avoid incurring hefty out-of-pocket expenses to replace or repair damaged or stolen equipment.
Choosing the Right Inland Marine Insurance Policy
When selecting an inland marine insurance policy, contractors should consider the following factors:
1. Coverage Limits
Ensure that the policy’s coverage limits align with the total value of your assets. It’s crucial to accurately assess the worth of your equipment and tools to avoid being underinsured.
Understand the deductible structure of the policy. A deductible is the amount you must pay out of pocket before the insurance coverage kicks in. Choose a deductible that you can comfortably afford.
Review the policy’s exclusions to understand what risks are not covered. Some policies may exclude certain types of equipment or specific causes of loss.
1. Is inland marine insurance only for contractors?
No, inland marine insurance is not limited to contractors. It can also benefit businesses in other industries, such as healthcare, technology, and retail, that have movable assets.
2. Does my existing commercial property insurance cover my equipment during transportation?
Most commercial property insurance policies exclude coverage for property while it is in transit. Inland marine insurance fills this gap and provides the necessary coverage.
3. Can I add new equipment to my inland marine insurance policy?
Yes, you can typically add new equipment to your policy. It’s important to inform your insurance provider whenever you acquire new assets to ensure they are adequately covered.
4. Are there any limitations or restrictions on the coverage?
Each inland marine insurance policy may have different limitations or restrictions. It’s crucial to carefully review the terms and conditions of the policy to understand any specific exclusions or limitations.
5. How much does inland marine insurance cost?
The cost of inland marine insurance varies depending on factors such as the value of your assets, the type of coverage needed, and your business’s location and claims history. It’s recommended to obtain quotes from multiple insurance providers to compare costs.