BUSH ‘n Beach has brought Nautilus Marine Insurance on board to expand the fine print and provide readers with clear, easy-to-understand and helpful tips on protecting their boating assets.
You’ve had to bail out of that planned fishing trip with your mates.
Trouble is, you’re the one who owns the boat.
The question becomes: Can the fishing trip still go ahead in your boat without you and what happens if something goes pear-shaped?
Provided you are happy to lend your boat to another member of your group and you know for certain he or she holds the appropriate licences to tow your boat behind a suitable vehicle and later drive your boat, then yes, it can still go ahead. As for what happens if something goes pear-shaped, well, that’s a little more complicated. If your boat is insured with a boat insurance specialist such as Nautilus Marine, then the insurance cover for your boat most likely will continue while it is in the possession of your friend – provided, and it is a critically important proviso, that your friend is considered a good risk by your insurer.
You were granted insurance cover for your boat because the declarations you made on your insurance application form indicated you were a good risk. If you had a record of driving offences on or off the water, had an inordinate number of claims or had previously been refused insurance, then your boat insurance application probably would have been refused.
But that wasn’t the case, so the insurance cover was granted to you. Similarly, if your friend, who now is going to be looking after your boat, has an excellent driving and insurance record, then the specialist marine insurer would not be increasing their exposure to risk and ordinarily, there would not be a problem extending your cover.
However, if your friend has a history of driving or other offences on or off the water, that would create a serious disparity between why you were granted insurance and why your friend might not have been granted cover. And in that case, there would be a problem having the cover extended. Clearly the smart approach would be to contact your marine insurer or broker and explain what you would like to do beforehand.
In doing so, there would be an opportunity for the marine insurer to ascertain the level of risk which your friend would be bringing into the equation. There also would be an opportunity to document the discussion and any agreement or refusal arising from it. That way you, your friend and the marine insurer would all be of the same understanding about coverage.
As always, don’t simply assume that your boat will be covered in every circumstance by every insurer. Always check your policy and its product disclosure statement.
And if you need further information, you can contact Nautilus Marine Insurance on 1300 780 533 for any boat insurance requirements.