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Marine Cargo Insurance – FAQ’s

2017 11 24

marine cargo insuranceThis category of business insurance protection is also classed as a type of property insurance. This form of coverage protects the contents of your cargo whilst on transit—whether that is by land, sea or sky. Logistics companies or those which require trade and transit in order to fulfil their principle business, will find this insurance invaluable.

The Legalities

The Marine Cargo Insurance Act was put into place in 1906. As previously stated, although the act states ‘Marine Cargo’ which thereby equates to transit by sea, Marine Cargo Insurance actually covers all aspects of logistics: sky, sea, road and railway.

Many companies require multiple transits in order to transport their product, for example a mix of sea and land, therefore the act stands to protect against losses in any and all areas of transportation. For more information, speak to a reputable insurance broker to know what applies to you and your business.

How to ensure your insurance is valid

There are lots of things that you must accurately disclose to your broker in regards to your Marine Cargo Insurance. In the case of you needing to make a claim, all facts must be accurate.

You need to:

  1. have an accurate record of what is on each shipment
  2. keep a log of all vehicles, freightliners etc. (if you do not own them, log which companies you are using and at which times etc.)
  3. keep a record of times and dates to monitor the movements of vehicles, freightliners etc.
  4. ensure you know what vehicle is containing which shipment—if something were to go wrong and you needed to claim, this information is invaluable.

The information stated above needs to be written into your policy agreement. If it is impossible to write in such precise information, a ‘Floating Ship Policy’ can be used instead. This allows you to omit details of vehicles, freightliners etc. until the event of a declaration (an insurance claim).

Frequently Asked Questions

What does Marine Cargo Insurance cover?

This type of insurance typically covers:

  • Loss or damage of goods in transit
  • Loss of goods due to theft or fire
  • Incidents relating to the vehicle itself i.e. road accidents, lorries overturning etc.
  • Natural disasters which lead to loss of goods
  • Protection of goods in warehouse storage
  • Total loss of a package or vessel

There are other aspects which may be included but you would have to check any and all details with your insurance provider.

Is there a financial limit on the insurance cover?

Generally, there isn’t, but each Insurance Company may stipulate where their financial perimeters lie. This may be due to size company or the likelihood of a huge pay-out which may bankrupt. There is, however, the opportunity to have a ‘valued policy’ section in your insurance policy. This means that there has been an agreed value for the contents of the cargo shipment. This may be accosted based on an average or in the case that every shipment is considered to be worth the same/similar value.

Will my premiums go up if I have to claim?

Like any insurance policy you have taken out in your life, if you claim there is a very likely chance that your premium will go up the following year. However, speak to your insurance broker at the time of writing up the policy. They may be able to write something in or fix your premium in another way.

Is there a way to help prevent me from having to claim?

There are many things that you can do to help prevent a claim, however, these are most likely precautions you are already taking. The premise of an insurance policy is to protect you in the case of the unpredictable and unpreventable. Ensuring accurate logs, as aforementioned, will help keep your business organised, which in itself may help prevent a future claim.

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