One of the most intriguing coverages you may hear about in business insurance is inland marine insurance. While it has nothing to do with the sea, it has everything to do with protecting the stuff you use in your day-to-day business activities.
Inland marine insurance is a first-party coverage. A majority of the policies you use to insure your business can help in the case of your business or product causing damage or inflicting injuries—but what if something damages the equipment you need to run your business? That’s where inland marine insurance may be able to help you.
What is inland marine insurance?
Also known as business personal property insurance, inland marine is a type of insurance for the tools, equipment, and other types of moveable property you use to run your business—while on the job or being transported across land. If an insured item is stolen or damaged, your insurance policy may help you repair or replace the item.
Who uses inland marine insurance?
If you regularly transport property or store it away from your primary business location, you should consider adding inland marine insurance to your business insurance plan.
Inland marine insurance is often used by businesses who:
- Frequently ship products or property by land
- Use contractors or freelancers who travel to job sites
- Operate a food truck, use a generator, or cater events
- Attend trade shows, conventions, exhibitions, and other events
- Store property at another location
- Use specialized equipment or tools to create a product or provide services
- Keep business property in commercial vehicles
- Move business assets between locations
- Manage business operations with electronic devices
What can you insure with inland marine insurance?
Inland marine insurance is used to cover a wide variety of specialty equipment and products. These items are vital to the way your business functions and operates. If they were to be damaged or stolen, your business may suffer as a result. Some of these items may include:
- Raw materials
- High-value property
- Finished goods and products
- Property being transported or moved to different locations
- Electronics such as a computer, tablet, television, radio, video, and sound equipment
- In-store or mobile payment systems
- Special event equipment
- Booth, vendor, and exhibition supplies
- Medical and exercise equipment
- Miscellaneous business gear
- Tables, tools, and products used to deliver a service
There are some things inland marine insurance cannot cover, such as:
- Structures or commercial property
- Business vehicles
- Damages from earthquakes and floods
- Property shipped by sea or by air
- Damages that occur prior to shipment
How inland marine insurance can benefit your business
Inland marine insurance may help cover the items commercial property or renters insurance don’t cover. Commercial property insurance can only cover your business property at the location you have listed on your policy. If something happens to it outside your place of business, you would have to pay to repair or replace the item on your own. The same applies to renters or homeowners insurance, since this type of policy often will not insure items you use to make an income.
Let’s take a look at a few examples of how inland marine insurance may play a role in your business.
1. Property damage in transit
A supplier sends materials to a manufacturer so a product may be assembled, but, the cargo truck gets in an accident while on the road damaging most of the materials beyond repair. Inland marine insurance may be able to help the supplier recoup the funds used to source those materials.
2. Stolen company equipment
Your employee is on their way to an event to represent your business. They are traveling with a large product inventory to sell and supplies to set up the booth. While inside a gas station, someone breaks into the employee’s car and steals items needed for the event. Inland marine insurance may help your company pay to replace the booth supplies and cover the cost of the materials needed to make the stolen products.
3. Damages from another party
A small business owner meets with a potential partner at a local cafe. While discussing a brand deal, the other person accidentally spills coffee onto the business owner’s computer. Because this computer is used to store important documents and conduct business, it needs to be repaired immediately. Inland marine insurance may help reimburse the business owner with the cost it took to repair the damaged laptop.
4. Lost or stolen business gear
You have invested in some nice filming equipment for your business so you can create instructional product videos for your website and social media. Since you work out of your own home, this equipment is kept in your home office. When you are not there, your home is broken into and your filming gear was amongst some of the items stolen. Inland marine insurance may help you pay for new equipment so you can continue creating important content.
5. Shipping damages
A potter mails a handcrafted vase to a customer. They carefully package the vase and send it out in the mail. The delivery truck driver has to swerve to avoid an accident, causing the boxes in the vehicle to suddenly shift. Unfortunately, the customer receives a broken vase. Inland marine may cover the costs used to create the vase, such as the clay, glaze, and paints. In most cases, inland marine insurance does not cover the final costs of the piece as the value of art is subjective.
Where you can find inland marine insurance
Inland marine insurance may be included in some commercial property insurance policies or as an optional policy you can add on to your current insurance plan. This is called an additional endorsement. It’s important to read through your policy documents to see if inland marine insurance is listed as an optional or included coverage. If you are unsure, call your insurance provider and see how this coverage may be extended to you.
Insurance Canopy offers inland marine insurance with most of our liability plans. The cost to add inland marine coverage varies based on the type of property you are wanting to insure, the size of your business, the risk the items carry, and any past claims history.
With Insurance Canopy, you can help to protect your business in-stores, online, on-site, and on the road. With a wide variety of coverage options and several different niche industry plans, you can customize a plan to suit your business needs—including coverage for inland marine insurance.
If you’re looking for a policy you can trust at a price you can afford, Insurance Canopy is the answer. It’s easy to get started, just submit an application online in ten minutes or less to receive a free quote. Start protecting your business with quality coverage you can trust today!
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