You may have heard the term “inland marine insurance” before and thought that it didn’t apply to your business, but you would be surprised at what it actually covers. Despite the name, Inland Marine insurance has less to do with the “marine” part and more to do with the “inland” part, and covers a wide variety of items.
It may also be called an “inland marine floater”, and the definition has expanded from just transporting goods over water to include items in transit on land, as well as the property of others at your business premises or being transported to or from your business premises. Here is what you may not know about this valuable insurance coverage.
It Covers Your Electronics
While some property or package policies include a small amount of coverage for electronic equipment, it typically is not enough to cover your entire electronics exposure. The coverage may also not be as broad as needed to cover this equipment. While you may think of electronics as just computers, here is what you could schedule under Electronic Data Processing coverage:
- Network servers
- Desktop computers
- Laptops, notebooks computers, netbooks
- Electronic media such as tapes, disks, or drives on which data is stored
- Electronic data stored on the above items such as concepts or programs
- Expenses associated with retrieving or restoring electronic data
It Covers Your Contractor Exposures
Where office equipment like furnishings and fixtures is covered under property insurance, moveable tools and equipment are covered under an inland marine policy. Why? The coverage is more broad, covering a wider range of hazards due to the transitory nature of the equipment and job sites.
Tools & Equipment
Contractors equipment such as hammers, saws, small machinery and other items may be used and left at off-premises job sites or may be in transit via work vehicles or employee personal vehicles. Since the the site for these items isn’t long-term or fixed, they would be covered as inland marine.
While a backhoe or a forklift have wheels and a steering wheel, they aren’t tagged or licensed for road use, so they cannot be insured as autos. Insuring these items as inland marine equipment covers big ticket items whether they are owned, leased or rented.
Building equipment purchased by a contractor, in transit to or on a job site, but not yet handed over to the owner of the job, is considered inland marine. This includes lumber, masonry, fixtures and anything being used to construct or install.
This is a type of inland marine policy that covers insurable interest in building materials used to build a commercial or residential building, or needed to renovate one. The policy can cover not only the contractor’s interest, but also the building owner’s interest, as well the interest of a mortgagee.
It Covers Things You Don’t Own
While most property insurance requires you to have an insurable interest in an item, inland marine coverage insures goods that you don’t own, but that may be in your care. These items are called Bailee Customer Goods.
If you have temporary possession of a customer’s items for any reason, you need bailee coverage. This applies to such businesses as dry cleaners, jewelers, valet parking, computer repair, etc. If an item is lost, damaged or stolen while in your possession, the loss would be covered if it is included in the covered causes of loss listed on the policy.
It Covers So Much More
There is more to inland marine coverage than meets the eye. In addition to everything mentioned above, you can purchase a policy or endorsement for items like:
- Fine Arts
- Musical Instruments
- Ocean Cargo
- Communication Towers & Equipment
- Camera Equipment
- Accounts Receivable
- Valuable Papers & Records
If your business has items that are not contemplated under your property insurance policy, or items that are specifically excluded under another policy, inland marine coverage may be able to fill in the gaps. Talk to your Hayes Broker to find out how to make inland marine insurance work for your business.