Watercraft Insurance

What it protects against
Injury to another person, damage to another's property, legal expenses incurred when you let someone else use your craft, medical payments for injuries sustained by you and passengers, and theft. Policies also cover loss of the craft. Optional coverage includes uninsured boater, fishing equipment, other personal items, fuel spill liability, wreckage removal, and associated water sports like skiing or kneeboarding.

How it works
Policies require deductibles depending on the kind of benefit. These deductibles are typically $1,000 for medical benefits, $500 for theft, and $250 for property damage. Higher deductibles can reduce premiums. Policies offer a wide range of liability limits. Policyholders desiring towing coverage should check to ensure their contracts provide the protection. Loss protection can be for the actual cash value, a value agreed upon at issuance of the policy, or replacement value.

Who needs it
Owners of large or fast boats, including jet skis.

Who may not need it
Owners of small craft, such as canoes, small sailboats or small motorboats, because these people usually already have property-damage coverage through their homeowners or renters policies, but they may not have liability coverage.

When to buy it
Before using the craft.

How you pay for it
Periodic premiums.

Terms to Know
  • Collision Insurance  (View Definition )
  • Comprehensive Insurance  (View Definition )