Is Boat Insurance Required in NC?

Written By Charlotte Insurance on June 30, 2020. It has 0 comments.

A boat out on the water that belongs to someone who's wondering if they need boat insurance

The fact of the matter is that boating in the state of North Carolina does come with some requirements and restrictions. A boating license is required for anyone born after 1988, and a minimum amount of liability coverage is required for boat owners. If you’re asking yourself if boat insurance is required in NC, the answer is yes, but that doesn’t mean it has to be expensive or that you should only buy the bare minimum.

Here’s what you need to know.

What Happens if You Don’t Have Boat Insurance

The reality is that one bad accident in your boat could cause long-term, serious financial harm in your life. Without boat insurance, you have to pay out of pocket if you’re sued because of property damage or bodily injury caused by your boat. You also have to pay the total cost to repair any damage to your own boat or to replace your watercraft after a major accident. And if an uninsured boater causes damage to your craft, you have to pay that, too.

Bottomline: It’s potentially very expensive to go without boat insurance.

How Much Does Boat Insurance Cost?

Your exact annual premium will be based on multiple factors, but on average, a boat insurance costs anywhere from $150 to $500 per year. Factors that determine pricing include:

  • Year, make and model of your boat
  • Horsepower, engine type, and maximum operating speed
  • Value of your boat
  • Any modifications you make to your boat
  • Boater safety courses you take

You can also lower your costs by increasing your deductible and bundling your insurance policies.

Don’t Count on Your Homeowners Insurance

Many boat owners think they don’t need coverage because they have a homeowners insurance policy. That’s not necessarily true, and even if you are covered, it’s not the best option for any boat owner. Homeowners insurance only covers boats with 75 horsepower or less, and you only have liability coverage. You’ll still be on the hook for the costs to repair or replace your own boat and any injury or damage caused to your passengers.

What Boat Insurance Covers

In general, there are two basic types of boating insurance policies: named-peril and comprehensive. Named-peril policies cover only the perils listed in the policy which can leave out a lot of other potential accidents. Comprehensive costs a little more than named-peril and offers more peace of mind.

As always, you can modify coverage limits and other details to create a custom policy to fit your boating needs, but it’s important to remember what boating insurance can cover for you:

  • Physical damage to your boat
  • Damage to another person’s boat, dock, or other items
  • Bodily injury or death you’re responsible for
  • Injury to you or your passengers caused by an uninsured boater
  • Medical payments for you or your passengers injuries
  • Wreck removal and/or towing
  • Trailer coverage
  • Accessory insurance for supplies or personal items on your boat
  • Personal property

Before you get out on the water this summer, make sure you and your boat are protected by a good boating insurance policy. Contact Charlotte Insurance today for a free quote!

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