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Consider These 7 Crucial Factors for Inland Marine Insurance

Often when we think of the shipping industry our minds immediately go to air or water vessel transportation.

However, the reality is that more than half of the value of goods is transported by land. While land transportation certainly is a necessity, it’s often subject to unknown factors that can affect whatever your shipping.

Damage while loading or unloading, or potential car accidents and theft is a unique possibility when transporting by land. If the material your business is transporting is expensive, then you want to ensure that it will be safe if anything happens to it.

That’s where inland marine insurance comes into the picture. In this article, we’ll be going over this unique insurance type and some features you should look for in a policy. Let’s get started!

What is Inland Marine Insurance?

Often clients get inland marine insurance confused with marine insurance. While this is common, there are crucial distinctions between the two types of policies.

Marine insurance covers products that get transported over water. Inland marine insurance, on the other hand, covers any material that is transported overland.

This can be through train, truck, or temporary storage in a third party warehouse.

These types of policies typically protect against things like collision and theft, which are the two greatest concerns when transporting merchandise by land.

If you want to learn more about the specific of how inland marine insurance works, then make sure to check out our full guide.

Seven Features You Need in an Inland Marine Insurance Policy

There’s a reason why $640 billion worth of net premiums has been written by insurance companies to protect businesses. Particular companies need coverage from the unthinkable.

Unfortunately, not all inland marine insurance providers have their client’s best interests in mind. So to help you decide we’ve organized this list of seven features you should look for in a policy.

1) Equipment and Product Coverage

The first thing you want to make sure is that the insurance company protects whatever merchandise you’re trying to ship.

Most insurance companies will provide a general list of items that fall under their inland marine insurance policy. This includes things like:

  • Photo equipment
  • Science equipment
  • Computers and advanced systems
  • Large machinery
  • Vehicles
  • Construction material
  • Communication equipment (like cell towers)
  • Tools
  • Large medical equipment
  • Cargo
  • Items for delivery

If the merchandise you want to be covered by a policy doesn’t fall under this list, then make sure to contact the company. They may be able to tailor a personalized policy to your specific product.

2) Fair Deductible

A deductible refers to the amount of money you need to pay out-of-pocket for your covered claim. A good company will allow you to adjust your deductible to a fair amount when purchasing coverage for your business.

You should also pay attention to the coverage limit when building your contract. This is the limit that your insurance company will reimburse you on a potential claim.

3) Personalized Service

Inland marine insurance often needs to be tailored to the specific business that’s using the service. As such, personalized service is a must for any company that doesn’t want to be just another case number in a big business.

We recommend going with a smaller insurance company over one of the corporate giants. They’ll be able to give you customizable service the others simply can’t handle.

4) Affordable Rates

You don’t want to overpay for subpar inland marine insurance. As such, you should look for a policy that offers reasonable rates for the protection they offer.

Often this means shopping around with independent insurance agents. That’s because they’re able to offer more diverse options than captive agents that need to answer to a single insurance provider.

5) Annual and Short-Term Options

It’s important to think about how long you need your inland marine insurance policy for. Do you require it for one large shipping job?

Or a longer, more regular schedule? If you own a business that ships goods often, then we recommend the longer annual options that you can renew year by year as you need.

Otherwise, you’re better off going with a short-term policy option.

6) Full Range of Perils

The policy you sign will come with a list of the perils that your insurance company will cover if your goods are damaged by it.

This typically includes things like fire, water, wind, hail, theft, and collision damage.

However, many providers will add on additional coverage options if you want more specific protection during land transport.

7) Additional Coverage Options

Many inland marine insurance providers offer additional add-ons to your policy to round out your coverage.

These add-ons are ideal if you’re transporting a specific type of item, or you’re worried about a peril that’s not included in your policy. For example, if you’re transporting fine art to an exhibition, then you might be worried about the priceless nature of the piece.

Luckily, many providers offer more comprehensive Exhibition and Fine Art Coverage for these instances. Contact the insurance company you’re interested in a see if they can accommodate any additional coverage options you desire.

Need Inland Marine Coverage? Contact John B. Wright Insurance

We hope this article helped you learn more about what to look for when it comes to inland marine insurance.

As we mentioned before, it’s important to find an insurance company that isn’t beholden to the wishes of larger cooperation when shopping for this type of insurance.

So how do you find an independent agency that isn’t a captive agent?

Look no further than John B. Wright Insurance. Our company brings a truly personal touch to every insurance policy. That’s because we understand that each client has a different set of needs.

So, stop paying extra for a policy that doesn’t work for your business. Contact us today so you can request a quote and get the inland marine policy that you deserve.