What is Inland Marine Insurance?

Topics: Inland Marine

The concept of Inland Marine insurance may be hard to wrap your head around, especially since the terms “marine” and “inland” seem to contradict each other. So what does inland marine insurance cover and how can agents help their clients understand how it protects their business from liability?



Here’s an overview of Inland Marine insurance and why it’s a key component of AmTrust’s businessowners policy and an add-on option for our commercial packages.

What is commercial Inland Marine insurance? What does it cover?

In general, commercial Inland Marine insurance covers any property that is movable, transportable, or involved in transferring information. For example, these are some things that Inland Marine insurance might cover:
  • Contractor’s equipment
  • Valuable artwork, like paintings, photographs, and sculptures
  • Transportation equipment such as food trucks or cargo vans
  • Mobile tools and equipment for construction, landscaping, etc.
  • Property in transit like construction tools and supplies
  • Computer equipment, including servers and laptops
  • Communication equipment and networking tools
  • Scientific and medical equipment

What are inland marine risks?

If you’re thinking about getting Inland Marine insurance, it’s important to consider the nature of your business operations. While it was developed to protect against losses while shipping goods, Inland Marine insurance may protect your business against a myriad of other property damage risks. Some of these include:
  • Bailee’s customer coverage: This is designed to protect your business from liability if a client's’ property is damaged in your care, like if you operate a repair shop.
  • Builders’ risk: During construction projects, builders’ risk can protect the structures and materials used.
  • Exhibition and fine art coverage: If a valuable piece of artwork is on display, in transit, or on loan, exhibition and fine art coverage is designed to protect it.
  • Installation floater: This can cover goods from damage once they’re loaded on a truck until they are put to use.
  • Motor truck cargo coverage: When your business is transporting goods or delivering them to a client, this coverage can protect goods from damage.

A brief history of Inland Marine insurance

When business insurance was in its infancy, Ocean Marine insurance covered ships from losses acquired on their way to port. For example, if any goods were damaged from your ship getting caught in a storm, Ocean Marine insurance would compensate you for some of those financial losses.

This offered businesses sufficient coverage when boats were the primary means for shipping.

But over time, more businesses began transporting goods over rivers and land by trains, trucks, barges, and buses. Cargo still needed to be protected, so insurers began offering inland marine policies as a branch of ocean marine coverage.

Does my business need Inland Marine insurance?

If you’re considering Inland Marine coverage, your insurance agent can help you decide if it’s right for your business. Often, Inland Marine is included in a BOP or package and is bundled with other coverages such as crime, general liability and property.

This material is for informational purposes only, summarizes coverages and services that may be available in a policy, and is not legal or business advice. Neither AmTrust Financial Services, Inc. nor any of its subsidiaries or affiliates represents or warrants that the information contained herein is appropriate or suitable for any specific business or legal purpose. Readers seeking resolution of specific questions should consult their business and/or legal advisors.
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