When it comes to protecting property, businesses try to find insurance covers that guarantee them protection. However, it is essential to note that insurance companies often exclude property that is not within the premises of your business.

But if a business wants to ensure that everything is covered, then inland marine coverage would be the best option.

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What is inland marine insurance?

Inland marine insurance is a type of property insurance policy that ensures tools, equipment, goods, and any other property that isn’t stationed on a business premise.

The name inland shouldn’t mistake you to think that the insurance cover is meant for boats or anything of the sort.

Inland marine insurance offers protection for a wide range of property, including cargo, you ship using trucks, equipment, and machinery used in the construction sector, fine art, photography, musical instruments, among others.

Why the name inland marine?

Many years ago, the only way through which goods and services were shipped was through ocean shipping.

As such, people in business required a way of protecting their goods against any losses during ocean travel. That’s how ocean marine insurance came into existence.

As time moved by, other forms of transport such as rail and road started to emerge. Since transporters required a form of insurance to protect their goods, the same insurance companies that offered ocean marine insurance started insuring goods being transported by road and rail.

Therefore, inland marine insurance expanded and began offering protection for all manner of products, equipment, and merchandise for businesses. Even though time has moved and many things have changed, insurance companies chose to retain the name insurance.

What is covered by inland insurance?

Inland marine insurance is designed to protect the property of your business irrespective of where it is situated. This is different from commercial property insurance, which only covers the property stationed within your business premise.

There’s no doubt that most businesses have business owner’s policies that protect their properties. However, you should be aware that such insurance covers offer limited protection to any property that is not onsite.

For example, if your employees travel with equipment to work far from your business areas, the insurance company can only pay for a specific value. It will be difficult for them to pay for high-value equipment. The only way to cover such equipment would be to apply for an inland marine insurance cover.

Below are some of the property that can be covered by inland marine insurance:

  • Property on transit – this can include equipment or merchandise being transported from one point to another
    Property or goods you are keeping for someone else – For instance, is your business involves repairing computers for business. The cost of such property, a company would do well by applying for inland marine insurance to be safe.
    Property within a vehicle – Media companies with broadcasting equipment installed in their cars can also apply for inland marine insurance to protect them against any form of loss.
    Property that’s often moved from one point to another – This can be construction material that’s moved from one construction site to another
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Risk covered under the inland marine insurance

Inland marine insurance is provided on either a named peril basis or an all-risk basis. If you choose a named peril policy, then only the type of risks listed in the insurance company will be covered.

However, if you select the all-risk policy, any cause of loss, regardless of whether it is mentioned in the policy document or not, will be covered.

Below are commonly covered risks by the inland marine insurance:

  • Explosion
  • Lightning or fire
  • Vandalism or theft
  • Damage caused by vehicles or airplanes
  • Damage from water or floods
  • Hail or windstorm
  • Earthquake or any other natural disaster

Nonetheless, each insurance contract provides protections for different perils. That’s why it is essential to study your agreement and seek advice from an expert keenly.

All-risk covers tend to be more expensive compared to named peril covers. The good thing is that they provide more excellent protection to your business.

Types of Inland marine covers

Inland marine insurance can provide financial protections to wholesalers, manufacturers, or retailers when transporting goods to customers. It is a type of insurance coverage ideal for any business that engages in high-value assets and machinery.

There are two coverage options for shipping, i.e., motor truck cargo and installation floater.

Installation floater policy covers products and material from when they are loaded on a truck or vehicle until they are ready for use.

This type of coverage can be ideal for the following items:

  • Construction material
  • Networking and communication equipment
  • Scientific and medical equipment
  • Wind turbines and solar equipment

On the other, the motor truck cargo the person transporting the goods and the client’s property. The insurance company will compensate for the property of the client while in the hands of the driver.

However, it is worth noting that the motor truck cargo only covers the goods inside the truck. It doesn’t insure the truck itself.

Bailee’s customer coverage

Bailee’s insurance cover protects property or goods that are temporarily stored in your business premises or under your possession. This type of policy can cover the following businesses:

  • Jewelry shops
  • Warehouses
  • Computer repair stores
  • Hotels and veterinarians
  • Drycleaners
  • Furniture shops
  • Storage facilities

Property or movable equipment

Inland marine insurance can also offer protection for stuff that’s continuously on transit to serve clients. The property is covered wherever it is located. Examples of such property include:

  • Photography equipment
  • Catering equipment
  • Cleaning material
  • Trade show booths
  • Vending machines
  • Musical instruments
  • Computer equipment

Builder’s risk

Inland marine insurance also protects buildings under construction until they are completed.

The policy covers the building material for the entire construction period.

In a nutshell, inland marine insurance covers a lot of things. Although it was created hundreds of years ago, Inland marine insurance has grown to accommodate different businesses.