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Better safe than sorry

As a freelance professional skipper working on various boats, do you need insurance? If you don’t want to leave yourself vulnerable to being held personally liable for potentially sizeable claims then protection is a must.


That’s where our Skipper Third Party Liability insurance comes in.

As any skipper knows, it only takes a moment of inattention or one misjudged manoeuvre for an incident to occur. Imagine this scenario.


You, the skipper, fail to notice another boat entering your path as it pulls out of the harbour. The resulting collision fortunately results in no injuries but the extent of damage caused to the third party boat has yet to be determined. In the time that follows, it quickly becomes clear that the extent of the insurance cover on the boat you are skippering is insufficient, leaving you personally liable. The worst however, is yet to come as without settlement of the third party’s claim, the authorities forbid you to leave and the boat is detained, with the claimant requiring a five figure security deposit in exchange for its release. Neither you, nor the owner of the boat you are skippering, are in a position to raise this sum and it becomes evident that any planned follow up charters will not be able to take place. As costs rise, the owner of the boat you are skippering says he will demand compensation from you, the skipper responsible, for loss of charter revenue in view of the boat being impounded. As you argue with the owner of the third party boat over the question of liability; deal with an unhappy owner of the boat you were skippering, as well as calm a distressed crew, it quickly becomes clear that the legal and financial ramifications of this incident will continue to spiral.


Admittedly, this scenario is a bit of an exaggeration. However, based on our 50 years experience of handling claims in the marine insurance sector, we know that it’s precisely these scenarios that regularly complicate the lives of professional skippers and can sometimes bring significant financial burden.


Simply put, as a freelance skipper you may be held personally liable for incidents which damage property belonging to another person, or which result in another person’s death or injury. It is therefore important to take out appropriate insurance that protects you and your crew.

Why determining the level of liability of insurance on the boats you skipper is not always straightforward

It’s likely you know alot about boats, often down to the last detail but what about their insurance? As a freelance skipper, it‘s unlikely you will know the full extent of the insurance cover on the boats you skipper. In most cases, all you have is the owner‘s word that sufficient cover exists. With the Pantaenius Skipper Third Party Liability policy, you no longer have to rely on merely a word.


Though navigation across seas may be easy for you, navigating the ocean of regulation is another matter. With regulations varying from country to country it is difficult to determine the extent to which a boat is truly covered, especially given that some jurisdictions may only require lower levels of liability cover. The situation is further complicated as with many boats flying flags of all nationalities, it is likely that you’ll be confronted with documentation in all languages. Given these complications, it is all too easy to end up in a situation where, when you need it most, cover is either insufficient or doesn’t exist. The Pantaenius Skipper Third Party Liability policy comes into effect when the boat’s own liability insurance either does not exist or cannot be applied.


Whilst the Pantaenius Skipper Third Party Liability policy is primarily a personal insurance, if you skipper with a crew, crew members are also protected under this policy and are considered co-insureds. Therefore, not only are your own legal liabilities for personal injury to, or death of your crew members covered, we’ve also extended our cover to include the legal liabilities of your crew, including their liability for personal injury or death of you or fellow crew members.


You and your crew also have legal liability cover for accidental water pollution.


Don’t get caught out.


Further information on this market first product can be found on www.pantaenius.co.uk/skipper

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