YACHT-POOL was drawing up terms and conditions for the protection of charter skippers as far back as 1986. The insurance cover applies not only to minor damage, e.g. damage deductible from comprehensive insurance, but also to cases of gross negligence, which may be barely noticeable yet can seriously affect the skipper’s future.
Insurance cover for at least the skipper’s liability is therefore essential.
BOATICO Yachtcharter is tip provider for YACHT-POOL.
SKIPPERS´ LIABILITY INSURANCE
- Because in principle you are personally liable – with all your present and future assets – for damage which you have culpably caused to other people or material.
- Because your personal liability insurance policy does not cover liability claims arising from the actions of the skipper or crew.
- Because being the skipper, you are also liable for the members of the crew.
- Because liability disclaimers relating to crew members may not be applicable against third parties (e.g. pension insurance claims by the injured party).
- Because you are unaware of the actual extent of insurance cover on a vessel which has been chartered. All too often the insurance cover is limited to the value of the ship, which in turn may be much too little in view of the unlimited personal liability. In many cases only specific, listed forms of damage are covered, for example damage in the event of a collision, etc. But you will be held liable for all damage.
- Because you do not know whether there is any insurance cover at all. And because you do not know whether the premium has been paid on time, which in turn could mean that the insurer is released from all obligations – in which case you have no insurance cover whatsoever!
- Because ships sailing under foreign flags are normally insured under foreign insurance terms and conditions and in the local language, which means that it is virtually impossible for you to assess the actual scope of the insurance cover.
- Because none of the liability insurance policies which we are aware of covers liability claims by the yacht owner for damage caused to the chartered yacht itself as a result of gross negligence on the part of the skipper.
- Because YACHT-POOL covers even damage to the chartered yacht caused by gross negligence!
Every experienced skipper knows how quickly the harmony which exists among his crew can be shattered if he or a member of the crew causes some damage which all on board are asked to help pay for. So although the crew may have begun the trip harmoniously, suddenly they are at loggerheads over the question of why everyone should have to pay for damage which only one of them has caused. Final responsibility usually falls on the skipper himself since he is in charge of the vessel.
Inevitably this has led to skippers with a strong sense of responsibility calling increasingly for an insurance policy to cover this personal risk. The YACHT-POOL deposit insurance applies not just to a specific charter trip: it provides unlimited cover for a whole year – worldwide!
Because with it you can charter wherever you want, as often as you want, whatever boat you want, and for as long as you want – worldwide!
SKIPPERS´ ACCIDENT INSURANCE
- Because, irrespective of one’s own or other persons’ culpability, it covers the costs of accidents (for disability and the temporary consequences of accidents) in accordance with YACHT-POOL terms and conditions.
- Because liability insurance cover is not applicable if there is no culpability.
- Because even if there is culpability, the liability insurance cover is not applicable if the injured party happens to be a member of the family.
- Because accidents can be extremely costly when you can make practically no use of other persons’ liability insurance (foreign countries!).
- Because in the event of disability the financial consequences can threaten one’s own livelihood.
- Because standard accident insurance policies may not cover“forms of sport which are liable to involve danger” (this includes offshore sailing).
- Because standard accident insurance policies often only pay out if there has actually been an accident.
- Because the costs of rescue as provided for in standard accident insurance policies, i.e. in the amount of several thousand euros only, are much too low for blue-water sailing. A skipper accident insurance policy covers all accidents to persons which have been sustained by the insured parties when operating a yacht, in compliance with the General Terms and Conditions of Accidents and the Special YACHT-POOL Terms and Conditions.
The skipper accident insurance policy also pays out even if no persons have been involved in an accident, i.e. when you are in distress at sea and need to call for help to prevent an accident. Rescue costs for distress at sea are reimbursed up to €60,000, depending on the insured sum which has been selected, even if no persons have been injured (unlike standard accident insurance policies).
These gaps in insurance cover are often underestimated. Because who is aware that a rescue helicopter can cost up to € 16,000 per hour and that the rescue costs offered by standard insurance companies (a few thousand euros) may be completely insufficient? Or that there may be no payment if there is no actual accident, for instance because all persons involved have been rescued successfully?
But Yacht Pool pay up – even in cases like that !!
The skipper accident insurance policy is valid worldwide!
CHARTER CANCELLATION INSURANCE
- If the skipper cannot undertake the charter trip, e.g. because he or a family member is unwell, and the trip therefore has to be cancelled, the costs due for both skipper and crew are reimbursed.*
- If a crew member cannot undertake the charter trip, e.g. because he or a family member is unwell, the proportionate share of the costs for the crew member are reimbursed.*
- If the skipper becomes unavailable and no suitable replacement can be found, with the result that the trip has to be ended prematurely, the costs for the remaining (unused) portion of the trip will be reimbursed if the vessel cannot be chartered to another party.*
- If two persons have booked together and one is unable to undertake the trip, the other party can withdraw his or her booking.*
- The insurance covers the cost of the charter and the flights (if specified in the application).*
In the “General Travel Cancellation Insurance Conditions” the illness or decease of persons aged over 75 is excluded from the insurance cover. Many of our friends and family members have – fortunately – already reached this age.
YACHT POOL has removed this restriction – and others as well.
A minor difference – but a major impact.
*The deductible is 20% of the amount of the damages.
SKIPPERS´ LEGAL PROTECTION
Because being in the right is one thing – getting one’s rights is another. Because legal disputes in other countries can be very expensive. Because fees for foreign lawyers usually have to be paid in advance. Because you have to pay lawyers’ fees in different countries even if you win the case. It can even happen that not only the skipper but also the entire crew or just a single member of the crew is sued or himself/herself has good reason to sue.
Scope of insurance cover
Legal protection: Damages
Legal protection in connection with the assertion of claims for damages arising from private liability claims related to yacht management.
Legal protection: Criminal convictions
Legal defense in criminal proceedings arising from a boat accident or violation of criminal laws in connection with yacht management.
Legal protection: Loss of license
Legal representation in proceedings involving suspension of license. Skipper and crew have legal protection worldwide!
Insurance cover does not include legal protection for contractual agreements.
CONFISCATION OF A VESSEL
In the event of actual or suspected criminal activities, the vessel may be impounded by the relevant authorities. Our bail deposit of up to €52,000 can ensure a temporary stay of prosecution.
Confiscation may have significant financial consequences for you if the boat is not available for further chartering.
Because there is a risk that you will cause damage to the chartered vessel, with the result that it is not ready for use in time for the next charter. And because regress claims may be made against you for the loss of the charter business either for legal reasons or because of the charter contract.
The consequential damages insurance for charters covers legitimate regress claims arising from the loss of charter business from the fourth day of the subsequent charter and up to €13,000. Because with this cover you can charter wherever you want, as often as you want, whatever boat you want, and for as long as you want – worldwide!
There are rival offers available which include consequential damages insurance in the skipper’s liability insurance. We regard this as only limited cover, however, because under the terms of the General Liability Insurance Conditions (AHB) follow-up costs are only paid if you are legally obliged to pay by the laws of the country in question.
Because this is too little for the charter companies in many cases, there is sometimes an agreement in the terms and conditions of the charter contract to the effect that the charterer must pay the costs of consequential damages which he has incurred (thus the legal requirement is possibly replaced by a private contractual agreement). However, private agreements are not covered by the AHB, which is why our conditions state:
“Our insurance covers consequential damages
- arising from legal liability and
- contractual agreement.”