In our experience, the complexities of marine insurance can lead to confusion and surprise when a claim is denied.

Sadly, it has become common practice for insurance companies to rely on policies being complex and confusing in order to deny legitimate claims.

Here are four common reasons owner’s claims are denied and how to avoid them.

1. Neglecting maintenance to your vessel

If your insurance company deems that the damage you’re claiming is your fault due to a failure to properly maintain your vessel or its equipment you may be unable to recover your losses.

Keep a log of all maintenance, repairs, parts and labor you’ve done to your vessel. Providing this level of documentation greatly improves your ability to recover damages.

2. Confusion about what’s covered

In order to avoid unexpected surprises when filing your claim, regularly review and adjust your policy’s coverage accordingly when making upgrades, repairs, change in location, or business.

Calling your insurance company and asking what the impacts of these changes are to your policy is the best way to understand and be informed of your coverage.

3. Delay or mistakes when filing

If you’ve made a mistake on your claim like submitting it under the wrong policy, assessment errors, or even a minor typo on a form, insurance companies will use this as an excuse to deny your claim, causing delays in payment and unnecessary frustration.

Have someone qualified, and with experience, review your forms and hash out any lingering questions you may have with an insurance agent before filing. If you can keep a record of their responses and advice, and it turns out it was wrong, this can greatly improve your chances of recovery if legal action is necessary.

4. Lack of advocacy

Insurance companies are notorious for delaying, or flat out denying legitimate claims in hopes of deterring boat owners from generally pursuing valid claims.

Contact us if you’re feeling overwhelmed or need help making sense of your denied claim. Our experienced team can provide expert advice and help you recover your losses. Contact our team directly by phone, email, or filling out a form below.


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