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Old 02-06-2008, 06:32   #16
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Also, don't assume that just because you (or the guy who hit you) are 'insured' the company is just going to pay without a fight. If it's a bigish claim, you can expect them to go over it with a fine comb and use ANY legal excuse to not pay.

At least when your number hits in Vegas, the house pays right up.

I agree with those who say to insure only what you can't afford to lose. As for liability, hell I could accidentally hit a pedestrian with my bicycle and be sued for $5mil (welcome to the litigious society), but I'm not about to go through life scared. If I accidentally scratch someone else's boat (be it with my own sailboat, my kayak, or my bicycle at the dock) and they insist that I pay for some exotic repair job (rather than an appropriate repair at the local boatyard) then they will have to break out the lawyers. Luckily, my wife's one.
Precisely my philosophy, T34.

Gonesail, in my experience liablility insurance is not cheap for those willing to provide coverage here. A local magazine, All at Sea, ran a nice series of articles discussing "cheap" insurance in the Carib. The short version of the articles was "buyer beware" and "you get what you pay for" when it comes time for a claim, good luck. You may even need to sue your own insurer.

Gettinthere, the "what if" game is one that I and I assume others have played before making their insurance choices. You make valid points. Here is a true "what if" for you. What if while driving your dinghy to shore, you run over a snorkeler? Will your boat insurance cover you? What if a guest on your boat was driving your dinghy and hit the same snorkeler? Will your boat insurance cover you then? The "what if" game can be played ad naseum. The above did not happen to me but an attorney friend brought it to my attention when I discussed not getting insurance with him.

I agree that a bill for environmental damage could be large. I also know my sailing area and know the repercussions, or lack of, that occured after a sailboat broke off it's mooring, drifted to shore and broke up on some rocks. Environmental cleanup bill $0.....

Seriously hurting a person could result in an enormous liability. Agreed, it could happen.

So many bad things "could" happen. My glass is half-full and I don't believe it will spontaneously spring a leak. How do you see your glass?
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Old 02-06-2008, 06:40   #17
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liability insurance is cheap. when you start talking about return on the value of your boat then you will see the much higher premiums.

It has taken me decades to acquire a level of comfort. It won't break me to lose a boat, but if mine catches on fire and burns the two 50 footers next to me.... That would be financially devastating for me. They would likely sue me and take my house and investments. NO!!! I will keep the insurance.

Losing one's own boat may be easy come easy go, but look at the boats next to you, can you cut their owners' a a check? And if you can't, how responsible are you?

For the record, I HATE paying insurance premiums. My car insurance premiums alone run me $780.00 per month because I have 2 driving sons, but again, I have worked too hard and come too far to risk losing it all.
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Old 02-06-2008, 08:01   #18
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It has taken me decades to acquire a level of comfort. It won't break me to lose a boat, but if mine catches on fire and burns the two 50 footers next to me.... That would be financially devastating for me. They would likely sue me and take my house and investments. NO!!! I will keep the insurance.

Losing one's own boat may be easy come easy go, but look at the boats next to you, can you cut their owners' a a check? And if you can't, how responsible are you?

For the record, I HATE paying insurance premiums. My car insurance premiums alone run me $780.00 per month because I have 2 driving sons, but again, I have worked too hard and come too far to risk losing it all.
With my batteries switched off, as usual, and no shore power connection, I suppose somehow my boat could catch fire. Sounds like the start of an interesting seperate thread. Further assuming the live aboard (port side) and the security guys (night time) and the dockmaster (live aboard 20' away) and all the others that live aboard in the marina plus the patrons at the bar don't see the fire, don't cut my boat or others around it loose and clear them away and it manages to burn the boats on either side, I actually could cut them a check for their boats. It would suck but what accident doesn't? Fortunately they are basic older 30 foot cruisers like mine and not 50 footers. Good point though...note to self, never park next to something I can't afford to buy. I may have to request a special slip at the dinghy dock.

I too have worked hard to have a decent net worth and understand not wanting to lose it. I also understand probabilities based on historical data and each person must choose to be satisfied within their own individual risk comfort level.

For the record, I do have auto insurance and don't have a problem with those premiums.
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Old 02-06-2008, 08:02   #19
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It has taken me decades to acquire a level of comfort. It won't break me to lose a boat, but if mine catches on fire and burns the two 50 footers next to me.... That would be financially devastating for me. They would likely sue me and take my house and investments. NO!!! I will keep the insurance.

Losing one's own boat may be easy come easy go, but look at the boats next to you, can you cut their owners' a a check? And if you can't, how responsible are you?

For the record, I HATE paying insurance premiums. My car insurance premiums alone run me $780.00 per month because I have 2 driving sons, but again, I have worked too hard and come too far to risk losing it all.
Not to be a jerk, but isn't the marina at least partially responsible for damages incurred to boats by other marina guests? Isn't that why many require you to carry insurance?

I probably wouldn't park in a marina next to two superyachts without insurance. I'm currently in an insurance-less marina, surrounded by two 23-25 foot beaters, worth maybe $5K each. They are far more likely to damage me than vice versa (with my fenders and 10x5/8 docklines), but then I'm not a litigious AH.
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Old 02-06-2008, 09:31   #20
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When I was getting my insurance quotes for a (barely) 5 year old 43' and had read the fine print I came up with a hypothetical insurance scenario:

"In a thunderstorm, my boat is hit by lightning and it fries all of the electrics (SSB, radar, autopilot, etc.) and the standing rigging needs to be replaced. The sails are charred and unrepairable, as is the running rigging."

It turns out that each component of a boat is depreciated separately, and in my case the insurance company would have paid out exactly 0$!

I opted to put away money every month instead of paying insurance premiums as the only time I would really get anything from the insurance company would be in the case of a total loss.

I am shopping around for international liability insurance and once I find a policy that really does cover me anywhere I will get that.
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Old 02-06-2008, 09:50   #21
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I got liability. It's only about 100 a year for 300k coverage. I wouldn't go for full coverage on a boat like mine. If I had invested 100k into a boat, I might reconsider.

The way I look at it has been mentioned here. It would suck to lose my boat, but I could deal with it. However, I would not be able to deal with replacing an unknown amount of property that my boat has caused damage to or paying for an unknown amount of medical bills my boat has caused to spring up.
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Old 02-06-2008, 15:37   #22
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From someone with a 50 footer that had two boats drag anchor on them this past weekend and another boat come within inches of hitting them while this boat was trying to pick up a mooring next to them I think everyone should have insurance. I could almost bet that none of these 3 boats that almost hit us had insurance as it was amazing they were still afloat by the looks of them.
In reality the real problem is not that they don't have insurance. The real problem is that they have no idea what they are doing on a boat. They drop a anchor and if it hits the bottom they seem to figure they are anchored. One of the guys that dragged on us actually asked me if scope was important while anchoring..... yikes!
These people should spend money on either insurance or classes .
Just my two cents.
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Old 02-06-2008, 16:15   #23
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I got liability. It's only about 100 a year for 300k coverage.
, I would not be able to deal with replacing an unknown amount of property that my boat has caused damage to or paying for an unknown amount of medical bills my boat has caused to spring up.
With the fire example used earlier your 300k might as well be nothing.

I don't know what I will do.

It always boils down to money doesn't it?

I wish I had more too.
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Old 02-06-2008, 16:25   #24
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Not haveing insurance is a reality among cruisers, even to the point we share programs to print your own policy on.
Im not saying its the right thing to do, only that it is done..
when reading one of the monthy reports that the Pardey's write, Lin and Larry had mentioned that they couldnt find a marina in southern California as they didn't carry insurance on their boat. They felt the mony was better spent on ground tackle.
Which brings up something interesting..
Many boats as the Pardeys, are wood, and built by the owner.. And I'm wondering if they could buy insurance even if they wanted to.
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Old 02-06-2008, 17:27   #25
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And I'm wondering if they could buy insurance even if they wanted to.
Perhaps not but it would depend on what type of insurance they wanted. Since they felt at the time they didn't want to spend the money I doubt they looked very hard. They must have skipped California and a lot of other places. The world is pretty big and they couldn't go everywhere.

I'm sure forging an insurance policy makes no sense. The game of pretending you have insurance only works as long as you don't need it. Not having insurance in a case where the boat sinks and the environmental damages mount up can place you in jail. Fraudulent claims made as part of a contract don't help that case much. Helping forge insurance documents isn't a game to get caught at either.

You can pretend anything you can convince yourself of until it is proved untrue. The activity is not confined to boating as far as I have observed. Suggestion that the practice is quite common and that others will help you supports the illusion at even greater levels of fantasy.

There is a warning here. Continuation of a discussion concerning forged insurance documents won't be allowed here. We try to encourage better behavior by not allowing such activities. It's just part of a goal for more fun filled honest family entertainmnet. The discussing of just not having any insurance is perhaps not a problem since it avoids the issue of forgery, fraud, and conspiracy to commit fraud and / or forgery. We do however reserve the right to draw the line where we find it.
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Old 02-06-2008, 19:40   #26
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Not haveing insurance is a reality among cruisers, even to the point we share programs to print your own policy on.
Im not saying its the right thing to do, only that it is done..
when reading one of the monthy reports that the Pardey's write, Lin and Larry had mentioned that they couldnt find a marina in southern California as they didn't carry insurance on their boat. They felt the mony was better spent on ground tackle.
Which brings up something interesting..
Many boats as the Pardeys, are wood, and built by the owner.. And I'm wondering if they could buy insurance even if they wanted to.
In the marina I'm in, if you don't have insurance for your boat (and we're not talking bare minimum insurance), then you don't get a slip no matter what the boat is made of.
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Old 02-06-2008, 20:00   #27
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I agree with you, While we were in ventura, we not only had to provide insurance but the boat was inspected and thier policy was that if your boat was over 20 years old, They didnt want you in the marina.
I do carry insurance on my boat while here in California but once I leave, I dont think I will be paying as they wont cover where I want to go and when.
Comming down from the north-west, my insurance company (Zuric) requried we carry 4 people on the boat to be covered.
Thats not going to work on our next time out as its only the wife and I.
If your setting in a marina, or traveling within the 100 or 200 mile limit of your cruising grounds, insurance is relitively fair in price...
But try and get a quote for two people leaving on a 5 year trip around the world and having your destination and times being open.
I think Loyds would be the only one to pick up on that one...
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Old 03-06-2008, 01:15   #28
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i think a lot depends on where you are taking out insurance and who you are (or more exactly who your boat is).

my insurer would not insure my boat while it was on the u.s. register (and it didn't matter where the boat was located) but, once off the u.s. register, the cost of the insurance p.a. was around 3% of the insured value.

the reason they gave for their position was the degree of litigation in the u.s.

at 3% it doesn't seem unreasonable.
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Old 04-06-2008, 10:42   #29
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With the fire example used earlier your 300k might as well be nothing.

I don't know what I will do.

It always boils down to money doesn't it?

I wish I had more too.
That's just one more reason to avoid marinas at all costs. I see absolutely no reason I would HAVE to visit a marina in my current boat except for haulouts. If I could find somewhere with a decent tidal range I could even forego that.
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Old 04-06-2008, 11:11   #30
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That's just one more reason to avoid marinas at all costs. I see absolutely no reason I would HAVE to visit a marina in my current boat except for haulouts. If I could find somewhere with a decent tidal range I could even forego that.
My advice is to not go through life scared of litigation. You'll have the same issues on a mooring, or at any crowded anchorage. Like everything else in life, just don't be negligent, and you'll be hard pressed to find a judge who'll award excessive damages against you.

In the meantime try and steer clear of the gleaming superyachts where you suspect the owner might be a lawsuit-happy knucklehead (chances are... (s)he's a lawyer).

And don't be one yourself. If you take a scratch, and it was an honest mistake on the part of the other-guy, shrug it off. It continually amazes me how people file insurance claims to fix a scratched car bumper. I mean, WTF... it's a bumper.
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