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Thread: New Insurance Requirements for BC boating

  1. #1
    Senior Moderator Loren Beach's Avatar
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    wrench New Insurance Requirements for BC boating

    This thread is sort of related to the thread about choosing a Rendezvous destination for 2020, nominally the year we would all happily meet again in BC waters. Kathy and I are eager to return, but a financial problem has cropped up.

    I first became aware of a major change in required insurance for visiting boats when some of our club members visited Maple Bay YC in 2018 are were cautioned that their usual proof of insurance would have to document a 2 million $ liability coverage by 2020.

    The reciprocal moorage person at MBYC assures me that this new minimum is being implemented for all clubs and marinas in BC waters for next year. I have asked her WHY the change from the usual 300K or even 500K, and she dodges the question and never answers.
    So our club's Reciprocal Moorage chair got involved and sought guidance from the folks that own the web site for information on all NW reciprocals.
    Here is an excerpt from his email to me today:

    "Well, I’ve done a bit of research since I got home and the information I found is not encouraging in terms of increased premiums to meet the $2,000,000. requirement that British Columbia is implementing.
    I called Bob Brunis, of Yacht Destinations, and he told me that this is the direction things are going in BC. He is going to try and list, in the “Terms" section of each reciprocal club on YD, the insurance requirement that they will insist upon in 2020.
    There is also a question that perhaps the requirement above $1,000,000. can be provided with proof of insurance with an Umbrella Policy, but you must make sure your boat or yacht is included in the Umbrella description coverage."


    Link: https://yachtdestinations.org/forums...?app=frontpage

    I have contacted my insurer, BoatUS, and this coverage would cost me an additional $80. a year. (My friend that handles our club's reciprocal's also checked what the increase would be for his 32 foot trawler, and was quoted $400./year.
    Yikes.

    I suppose that we can all wonder if several BC marina's were destroyed in recent years caused by visiting boats that burst into flames.... but it seems like a catastrophe of such gargantuan proportions would have been in the news.

    By comparison, our 150-boat yacht club moorage (Rose City YC) requires only proof of insurance and has not specified any minimum liability amount. Most of the policies seem to be at 300K or 500K and a handful have all of their insurances thru one carrier with a 1 million $ umbrella coverage on everything. In my capacity as Port Captain I see copies of these policies regularly, and know this to be factual. OF course our club has a hefty umbrella policy for the whole facility,

    I can imagine that a lot of smaller US boats will start choosing to either anchor out when going north or just not going. Perhaps.
    And yes, cruising a boat was never a cheap activity, but like all retirees we have to watch our budget when vacationing. This would seem to do nothing for the marinas but will enrich some large insurance companies, if a touch of cynicism is allowed.

    Or.... the marinas, public and private, just want to winnow out the "less financially endowed" boaters. Like us.

    This may affect participation of US boats in any cruising or rendezvous in BC waters, as much as we all LOVE to visit there.
    Plus, how can BC boaters afford to tie up in their own local marinas??

    If any of you know folks in the marine insurance business, please ask them what is causing this.
    Thanks so much.
    Last edited by Loren Beach; 10-24-2019 at 08:55 AM.
    1988 Olson 34 #8
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    Curator of Broken Parts toddster's Avatar
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    Wow. Just for comparison, I do have one of those “Umbrella” policy thingies (I have a... “boatload” of insurance, what with farm, home, vehicle, small business) and the umbrella is about $10/month/$M.

    Might pay to have a chat with your agent. And his competitor...

    I also once asked the agent if he could give me a letter or something to keep on the boat, in lieu of the “insurance cards” that we get for the vehicles. The best that he could come up with was, “print out a copy of all your declarations pages.”
    s/v arcturus E29 #134

  3. #3
    1984 Ericson 30+, Nanaimo, BC
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    Hi,
    For years, many marinas and yacht clubs in BC have required a minimum of 1 million insurance. I hadn't heard of the apparent increase to 2 million (even though I live here in BC) but personally increased my coverage to 2 million about 4 years ago. My reason was that if my boat catches fire and burns one or two expensive boats next to me, the cost could exceed 1 million and ruin my retirement.
    Insurance is not cheap (ours is about 700/year in Canadian dollars) but I don't want to worry about this stuff at my age and stage in life.
    Frank
    Last edited by Frank Langer; 10-24-2019 at 10:38 AM.

  4. #4
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    Wow! There will be caos for awhile. Most US boaters will not know of these new requirements. After that, there should be lots of empty berths for those of us who actually do have the umbrella coverage. I can't fathom the need for this except to empty their guest docks. With my Umbrella policy, my insurer wants a $300,000 liability limit for the boat.

    I will get my copier busy and make copies of my Dec Pages.
    Bob Morrison
    1987 E-34 Hull #15
    "Terra Nova"

  5. #5
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    Hey Loren! You have a 34 foot boat AND you belong to a Yacht Club. That makes you filthy rich according to most folks and they despise you.
    Bob Morrison
    1987 E-34 Hull #15
    "Terra Nova"

  6. #6
    Senior Moderator Loren Beach's Avatar
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    Red face

    Quote Originally Posted by supersailor View Post
    Hey Loren! You have a 34 foot boat AND you belong to a Yacht Club. That makes you filthy rich according to most folks and they despise you.
    What? Are you implying that they only love me for my Money?
    1988 Olson 34 #8
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  7. #7
    1984 Ericson 30+, Nanaimo, BC
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    Hi,
    So just to satisfy my curiosity, and perhaps to allay concerns, I phoned three well known marinas in BC--Maple Bay marina, Poets Cove /Bedwell marina and Port Sidney marina. All three said that they don't routinely ask about insurance for transient / guest moorage, don't have a specific policy requiring a certain amount (though Sidney said it could be 1 million) and none was aware of any initiative to require 2 million at all BC marinas in 2020.
    So, although these things can always change, at this point this seems to be a non issue. Our Nanaimo Yacht Club requires 1 million, with no knowledge of a requirement to increase this, though they acknowledge that the boat owner has to be prudent in deciding on appropriate coverage.
    Based on these few phone calls, I think US boaters can still plan to visit Canadian waters as usual, though this is just my opinion as a fellow boater, and therefore not an official statement.
    Frank

  8. #8
    Advanced Beginner bgary's Avatar
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    Verrrry interesting.

    Thanks for the info, Loren...

    I've reached out to my insurance guy to see how much it would cost to update my coverage. My current policy is $300k in liability coverage (plus ~900k in spill coverage). I'll post what I hear back.

    As the reciprocals chair for my club, I'm also going to have to figure out what this means for the reciprocal privileges we enjoy with - and extend to - BC clubs. Ugh.

    Bruce
    "Makana" (ex-Thelonious)
    1985 Ericson 32-III #604
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    Makes Up For It With Enthusiasm Geoff W.'s Avatar
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    Dang, I pay $1k/yr from BoatUS for the following. Am I getting screwed?

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    s/v "Delightful"
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  10. #10
    Advanced Beginner bgary's Avatar
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    Hmmm.... you have a little better coverage-limits than me, but not 2x better....

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    "Makana" (ex-Thelonious)
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    Government bureaucracy is a wonderful thing!

  12. #12
    Senior Moderator Loren Beach's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Drewm3i View Post
    Government bureaucracy is a wonderful thing!
    Not sure where you are coming from.
    This is all about the insurance industry, and individual yacht clubs and marinas changing their requirements for visiting boaters to qualify to moor for a night.
    1988 Olson 34 #8
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  13. #13
    Senior Moderator Loren Beach's Avatar
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    Post We are at 300K

    Note that our BoatUS policy is for an "agreed upon value". Also note that the premium $ is about 1% of the face amount. I have been told that this ratio is common in the industry, but have no personal knowledge. I also have never yet had a claim, but a local surveyor tells me that BoatUS is good about paying.
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    Last edited by Loren Beach; 10-24-2019 at 06:37 PM.
    1988 Olson 34 #8
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    Betamarine 25 (new 2018)
    Fresh Air
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  14. #14
    Senior Moderator Loren Beach's Avatar
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    Question

    Quote Originally Posted by Geoff W. View Post
    Dang, I pay $1k/yr from BoatUS for the following. Am I getting screwed?

    Click image for larger version. 

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    It appears that, compared to us, you pay a lot more $ for under half the 'agreed value' coverage. You may want to look into this further.
    1988 Olson 34 #8
    Sail # 28400
    Betamarine 25 (new 2018)
    Fresh Air
    Portland, OR USA

  15. #15
    Principal Partner
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    My policy is about the same cost and value as Loren's policy which kinda suprises me. After all, I had a huge claim about three years ago. I guess I won't gripe even though Insurance is everyone's biggest gripe.

    I'm going to relax a little on the Canadian Insurance although I will photocopy the Dec page on my boat and umbrella policies just in case. Better "safe" than sorry.
    Bob Morrison
    1987 E-34 Hull #15
    "Terra Nova"

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