Saturday, March 30, 2024

Do I Need Boat Insurance In Florida

How Much Is Boat Insurance

Do I need Boat Insurance? Even if I don’t care about what happens to my boat – Boat Insurance Basics

Did you know that you can secure the value of your boat for as little as one dollar per day?

Boat insurance isnt mandatory in the state of Florida, but you may find that certain marinas or boat docks have requirements that youll have to meet in order to participate. While prices can range based on coverage, boat insurance rarely exceeds a few hundred dollars per year, unless the boat being insured is very expensive. For example, a boat worth around $20,000 would only require a premium around $300 per year to have it properly insured.

The affordability of boat insurance makes it nearly unreasonable not to have the coverage, considering the replacement cost of a new boat if you dont have any type of insurance.

Florida Boat Safety Equipment Laws

Florida’s boat safety equipment requirements may vary based upon your boat’s size and use, but the law typically requires:

  • Fire extinguishers and backfire flame control
  • Visual distress signals if you operate the boat on the ocean or in coastal waters
  • A device that produces sound, to signal to other boats or in cases of distress, such as a horn
  • A ventilation system
  • Vessel lighting equipment

Florida boating law also requires you to carry at least one personal flotation device, such as a life jacket, per person on the boat. And if your boat is over 16 feet or longer, you will also need to have a throwable flotation device on hand.

If you have children under the age of 13 on your boat, and it’s being operated on open waters, they must wear their life jackets at all times unless inside a cabin or below deck. And children age five or younger need to wear a life jacket at all times if your boat is less than 26 feet long. Personal flotation devices must meet the requirements set by the U.S. Coast Guard.

In order to ride a PWC or jet ski, Florida law requires that you wear an approved life jacket at all times. The same applies to anyone being towed behind a boat.

Do I Need Boat Insurance In Florida

You are not required by law to purchase boat insurance if you own or operate a vessel in Florida. Some marinas and boatyards have boat insurance requirements, and the loan company may require you to purchase a policy if you have a lien on the boat. Although you are not required by law to purchase boat insurance, it is probably a good idea to purchase insurance because Florida has more registered boats than any other state and one of the highest accident rates in the country. Florida has very busy waterways, hurricanes, storm and a high potential for damages. Boat insurance is a no brainer.

Don’t Miss: What Size Boat Battery Do I Need

Best For Individualized Customer Service: United Marine Underwriters

United Marine Underwriters

  • No. of Policy Types: 4
  • Coverage Limit: $1 million

The provider offers personal attention to its customers, doesnt make them feel like a number, and each customer gets assigned a primary customer service agent.

  • Discounts for boat safety courses

  • Knowledgeable agents

  • Cant buy other types of insurance from them

  • Contact for pricing and policy details

As it emphasizes on its website, United Marine Underwriters is a specialty insurance company that writes insurance for just boats. It has been in business since 1990 and provides boat insurance in all U.S. states except New Mexico. Boat insurance navigation is also available to Canada, the Bahamas, and Mexico. Liability limits are available up to $1,000,000, with discounts available for completing one of several boating safety courses approved by the Coast Guard Auxiliary and Power Squadron and the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators, among others, according to its website.

One of the more unique things about United Marine Underwriters is its policy service. When you purchase a boat insurance policy through United Marine Underwriters, you are assigned a primary service person who takes care of all of your servicing needs. This company really cares about its customer service.

Best For Affordability: Allstate

Do I Need Boat Insurance?
  • No. of Policy Types: 3+
  • Coverage Limit: Varies

Allstate is an insurance powerhouse that offers affordable boat insurance, multiple discounts, and additional boating resources on its website.

  • Need to speak to agent for policy details

  • Doesnt specialize in boat insurance

  • May not get personal attention of a smaller company

Allstate is one of the biggest personal insurers in the United States, consistently drawing high financial strength and customer service ratings from a variety of rating institutions, including A+ from AM Best. Allstate advertises its boat insurance as being affordable for a variety of boat types and coverage options, with some policies available for as low as a $25 monthly premium. The company offers a variety of payment options to fit your financial situation, including Allstate’s Easy Pay Plan where you can save 5% by having your boat insurance premium automatically deducted from your checking account. Or, if you opt to pay in full, you can save up to 10% on your policy premium. If you already have other policies through Allstate, it makes sense to check into their boat insurance coverage since you can save up to 20% on your policy premium by combining it with a home policy. Allstate also offers a 10% discount on boat insurance to all home owners.

Read Also: How Much Are Boat Loan Interest Rates

We Insure Over 1 Million Watercraft And We Can Help Insure Yours Too

With over 35 years of boat insurance experience, we know how to keep you afloat. So, as long as your boat or personal watercraft is valued at no more than $500,000 and is up to 50 feet long, well most likely insure it. Dont see your watercraft listed here? Call us at and well do what we can to get you covered.

Some of our coverages

What Other Factors Affect Your Boat Insurance Cost

Besides where you live, several factors play into boat insurance rates, including:

  • Type of watercraft: Fishing boats, pontoon boats, sailboats, and other personal watercraft all have unique features that may affect the cost of your policy.
  • Safety measures:Completing a boating safety course may lower your rate.
  • Boats horsepower: Boats with stronger engines, like powerboats, often have higher rates.
  • Boat’s age: Newer boats are often more expensive to insure than older boats.
  • Boating history: More experienced boaters may receive lower insurance rates than newer boaters with less experience on the water.

You may be able to lower the cost of boat insurance by qualifying for discounts, including multi-policy, multi-boat, and responsible driver. Learn more about boat insurance discounts at Progressive.

Recommended Reading: What Battery For My Boat

Liability Coverage For Boat Insurance: Why It Matters

Boat insurance can be purchased to cover physical damage and protect against liability. Liability coverage can be critical in cases of bodily injury or loss of life. If you are sued by another party claiming you are responsible for an injury or death, the cost of defending against the claim can be paid through your policy.

If you do not have sufficient liability coverage in place, you can lose your personal assets, including retirement funds, investment funds, or the value of your property. You have worked to accrue assets that could be lost in a lawsuit, and liability coverage for a non-motorized boat provides an essential form of protection.

How Much Boat Insurance Do I Need For A Non

Do I need Boat Insurance?

In some cases, a non-motorized boat could be covered under your homeowners policy, but only a review of your existing insurance policy will reveal the policy limits. Make sure you know these limits before an accident happens. The limits are typically low, and it is smart to find out if you need added coverage based on the value of your watercraft. A kayak, small sailboat, RIB, or canoe may have a value far higher than the typical $1,500 limit in a standard homeowners policy.

You May Like: What To Use To Clean Vinyl Boat Seats

Is Boat Insurance Mandatory In Florida

You can cruise into trouble in Florida without any insurance on your boat to cover property damage or injuries. Florida law doesn’t make insurance mandatory for recreational boats as of 2011. Even so, that doesn’t mean every boater has a choice about whether to buy a policy. If you took out a loan to buy the boat, the lender is likely to require insurance. A marina or boatyard where you keep the boat may require customers to carry insurance. For a boater who wants to protect his investment and passengers, insurance isn’t optional and it doesn’t matter if it’s a law.

What Does Full Coverage Car Insurance Consist Of

Category: Insurance 1. What is Full Coverage Auto Insurance? | Allstate What Is Full Coverage? When people talk about full coverage car insurance, theyre often referring to a combination of coverages that help protect a vehicle.Type of Car Insurance Coverage: Required or Collision Coverage: Optional (unless you lease Comprehensive Coverage:

You May Like: What Is The Best Family Boat

What Else Should You Know About Boat Insurance

All watercraft should be properly insured. The ABC Dennis Insurance agency provides insurance for boats, including:

  • Runabout.
  • Many others.

Boat insurance can provide coverage for:

  • Damages to the vessel or your personal property, which are subject to a deductible whether the damage was sustained on the water or while on the trailer.
  • Liability coverage for damages to others.
  • Medical payments coverage in case you, or a guest, sustain an injury.
  • Uninsured boat owner coverage, in case youre injured or your boat is damaged by an uninsured vessel.
  • Towing coverage should you become stranded and need towing to a port.

How To Get A License To Drive A Boat In Florida

Boat Insurance

Florida is so attractive to recreational boaters that at least 100,000 sail in these parts on any given day.

All kinds of boaters would love to go sightseeing and fishing in Jacksonville/St. Augustine. Some would like to enjoy the beaches, boat shows, and diving in Fort Lauderdale/Miami, while others would like to experience island cruising in the Florida Keys/Tampa Bay. The more adventurous would go deep-sea fishing in Pensacola Bay.

So weve answered the question do you need a license to drive a boat in Florida? Next, lets take a look at how to get a license to drive a boat in Florida.

Technically, Florida does not require a person to get a license to drive a boat on its waters. However, the state requires every boater born on or after Jan. 1, 1988, to get a Boating Safety Education Identification Card if he or she will drive a boat with a motor of at least 10 horsepower.

To obtain this card, you have to pass a Florida-approved boating safety course. After completing this course, you have to request an ID card from the FWC. In reality, there are three simple and easy steps on how to get a boat license in Florida. They are as follows:

  • Study, complete, and pass an online boating and safety course. The average cost of this course is $34.95.
  • Once you pass the online boating course, print the certificate of completion. This certificate is valid for 90 days after completing the course.
  • Recommended Reading: How To Register Homemade Boat

    The 6 Best Boat Insurance Companies

    • State Farm: Best customer service
    • American Family: Best for fishing boats
    • Farmers: Best package deals

    State Farm is one of the largest insurers in the U.S. Its built a positive reputation on multiple coverage options, timely claims payments, and a focus on customer service. State Farms gets an A rating from the Better Business Bureau, and although J.D. Power does not specifically rate boat insurers, its overall customer satisfaction ranking index for homeowner claims is above average.

    State Farm offers an extensive range of coverages, insuring against sinking, fire, theft, storms, collision, and more. Its property coverage insurance extends to tools, skis and tow ropes, dinghies, and anchors, as well as the boat, motor, and trailer themselves. There are also optional coverages for boat rental liability, fishing tournament fees, uninsured/underinsured watercraft coverage, and more.

    Best For: those who value excellent customer service

    Not For: those on a budget

    • AM Best: A++

    AmFam insures bass and fishing boats up to 54 feet long and with a value of up to $250K. It offers standard coverage such as physical damage, bodily injury, property damage, and medical expense coverage, along with extensive additional options. A high liability limit of $1 million means youll be well-covered in the event of an accident or other mishap.

    Best For: small and mid-sized fishing boats

    Not For: large commercial watercraft

    • AM Best: A
    • AM Best: A

    Best For Policy Bundling: Nationwide


    • No. of Policy Types: 4
    • Coverage Limit: Varies

    Nationwide is a well-known insurance provider that offers several packages to choose from and offers bundling discounts.

    • Multiple packages to choose from

    • Towing coverage

    • Need to enter zip code for policy details

    • Contact for pricing

    • Website could be more detailed

    If you are already a Nationwide policyholder, then you may be eligible for the multi-policy discount offered through Nationwide Insurance, which gives you a discount for combining your home, boat, vehicle or life insurance policies. A few perks of this policy include optional towing and rental reimbursement coverage, as well as roadside assistance when you insure your boat trailer.

    Several options are available for boat insurance with a variety of package options. You can get coverage for fishing equipment from $1,000 to $10,000, personal effects from $3,000 to $5,000 and towing coverage from $500 to $2,500. Other discounts include multi-boat, boater safety course, diesel fuel, paid-in-full discount, and a claims-free renewal discount that goes into effect for the policy renewal period if you have remained claims-free for the entire policy period. Nationwide also has a rewards program through a partnership with Plenti, which allows customers to earn points that can be applied as discounts at certain stores.

    Don’t Miss: What Does Geico Boat Insurance Cover

    Discounted Boat Insurance With Multiple Daffin Insurance Agency Insurance Policies

    If you purchase boat insurance through Daffin Insurance Agency, you may qualify for discounted rates if you already have other insurance policies. Whether youre already a Daffin Insurance Agency policyholder or not, ask us about multiple-policy discounts for bundling boat insurance with other policies. Some additional discounts and coverages may include:

    Which States Require A Boat License

    Do I need boat insurance

    According to the United States Coast Guard and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, the second most common boating accident is due to inexperience. This has led to 480 boating accidents in 2016 alone.

    Boating is far less regulated than operating a motor vehicle such as a car. Only a handful of states require you to have an actual boating license, including:

    • Alabama
    • Georgia
    • Mississippi

    However, even though most states dont require a license, they may still have other requirements.

    Brad Goldberry, Agency Producer with Farmers Insurance says, State licensing differs from state to state, but many states require some kind of personal boating license or course.

    Before you head out on the water, make sure you review your states requirements. Its always better to be safe than sorry.

    Read Also: How To Register Boat Without Bill Of Sale

    How We Found The Best Boat Insurance

    28 Providers

    Advertiser Disclosure:

    There are few activities as enjoyable as spending a sunny afternoon out on the water. Suppose youre one of roughly 13 million registered boat owners in the U.S. In that case, you know that enjoyment is predicated on safety and understanding the boating risks which is where boat insurance comes in.

    In this article, well look at the best boat insurance companies in the U.S., assessing what each provider does best and what type of boat owners will be happiest with their coverage. We also looked at customer service and financial stability since you want a company that can payout on claims even after a sizable regional disaster.

    Boat Insurance Policy Basics

    What Is Boat Insurance? Why Do I Need It?

    Boat and yacht insurance sometimes referred to as marine insurance is designed to help protect you and your boating guests from the potentially high cost of accident-related damages or injuries. It is a contract between you and your insurance company in which you pay a premium to the insurance company in exchange for a set of available coverages you select. If you finance or lease your vessel, your lender may require specific insurance coverages and limits.

    Is a Boat Covered Under Homeowners Insurance?

    Carrying boat or yacht insurance is a smart decision. Contrary to popular belief, your vessel is not automatically covered under your homeowners policy. If you cause an accident, or get into one with an uninsured vessel, you may be held responsible to cover related expenses, such as repairs, property damage, medical bills and more. Without the proper coverage, your financial well-being could be at risk.

    Working with an insurance representative to create a marine insurance policy that helps fit your individual needs and budget can help protect you, your loved ones and your assets in the event there is a boating accident.

    What Does Boat Insurance Cover?

    Boat insurance coverage options depend on the state where your boat is used, your insurance company and the coverage you choose. Standard boat insurance coverage options typically include:

    Who Does Boat Insurance Cover? Who Needs to Be on My Policy?How Do I Buy Boat Insurance?Insure

    You May Like: What Kind Of Boat To Buy

    Boat Insurance Requirements By State

    Generally speaking, you won’t be required by your state to purchase boat insurance. In fact, only a handful of states require boaters to purchase insurance, and the requirement is often limited to boats with engines rated to have at least 50 horsepower. The table below lists the insurance requirements for each state.

    Arkansas Liability insurance with at least $50,000 in coverage is required for all boats powered by engines of more than 50 horsepower.
    Hawaii Only for boats parked in Department of Land and Natural Resources Division of Boating and Ocean Recreation facilities. Liability insurance with at least $500,000 in coverage is required for all boats parked in DOBOR facilities, including harbors and offshore moorings. The insurance policy must name the State of Hawaii, DOBOR as the “additional insured” or “additional interest”. The policy should cover salvage costs for grounded or sunken vessels, damage to docks, pollution containment and wreck removals.

    Popular Articles
    Related news