Last Updated: February 21, 2024, 2:21 pm by TRUiC Team

Fishing Charter Insurance

Getting insurance for your fishing charter business is essential.

To ensure the safety and success of fishing charter businesses, it is essential to protect them from the intrinsic risks of their operations, for which insurance is crucial. 

For example, a passenger could be injured on one of your charter boats, or damage could occur to your equipment. In that case, you’ll need insurance to protect your business from being bankrupted by legal fees and compensation.

We’ll help you find the most personalized and affordable insurance coverage for your unique business.

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Recommended: Next Insurance is dedicated to matching small businesses with the right policy at the best price.

Best Insurance for a Fishing Charter Business

General liability insurance is — generally speaking — one of the most important insurance policies for fishing charter businesses. 

Some of the risks general liability insurance covers are:

  • Bodily injury
  • Property damage
  • Medical payments
  • Legal defense and judgment
  • Personal and advertising injury

Although general liability insurance is designed to cover a wide range of risks, it may not provide coverage for all the risks that your business is exposed to. In such cases, you may need to obtain specialized policies that offer coverage for these specific risks. Some examples of these policies include:

  • Charter Boat Insurance: This can indemnify your fishing charter operation for costs that may have to be incurred for damage to hirers’ personal property or for providing them with medical attention.  
  • Mariner Liability Insurance: provides coverage for legal fees, payment of penalties, injury to passengers and more. 
  • Business income coverage: If a storm or other adverse event causes a halt in your operations, this coverage will pay for lost profits and the costs of resuming normal operations. 

Presently, insurers are of the following two types: 

  • Traditional brick and mortar insurers: These insurers, like Liberty Mutual, generally offer products in the well-recognized categories of life, health, long-term disability,and auto insurance. 
  • Online insurers: Insurtechs, like Policygenius and Next, offer lower premiums and more precise policy choices due to low overhead and reliance on AI tools to find the best policies for each business. They also offer products and services that may not be offered by traditional insurers. For example, insurtechs may offer usage-based insurance, which adjusts premiums based on actual usage. 

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Cost of General Liability Insurance

The average fishing charter business in America spends between $400-$1,100 per year for $1 million in general liability coverage.

Compare the average cost of general liability insurance for a fishing charter business to other professional industries using the graph below.

Several factors will determine the price of your policy. These include your:

  • Location
  • Deductible
  • Number of employees
  • Per-occurrence limit
  • General aggregate limit

You may be able to acquire general liability insurance at a discounted rate by purchasing it as part of a business owner’s policy (BOP) rather than as a standalone policy.

A BOP is a more comprehensive solution that includes multiple forms of coverage, such as business interruption and property insurance.

Graph showing average price of general liability insurance prices per industry

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Find the Best Rate

Discover the best coverage at the lowest rate in our affordable business insurance review.

Common Situations That General Liability Insurance May Cover for a Fishing Charter Business

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Example 1: A potential customer is visiting your place of business to discuss a fishing trip. He fails to see a bunch of cables strung across the ground and trips over them, falling and breaking his arm. Your general liability insurance policy will likely cover the cost of treating his injuries.

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Example 2: When stopping by your business to drop off a payment for an upcoming fishing trip, a customer slips and falls on a wet floor and sustains serious injuries. She blames your business and files a lawsuit against your company, demanding compensation. The general liability insurance policy you carry will pay for the cost of your legal defense, including paying for a settlement if it is deemed in the best interests of your business to pay the customer out of court.

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Example 3: One of your employees is attempting to teach a visitor how to use a large fishing rod and reel. In his enthusiasm, the employee knocks the customer to the ground, and he sustains injuries. The customer is upset at the employee and takes legal action against your business. Your general liability insurance will pay for your legal costs.

Other Types of Coverage Fishing Charter Businesses Need

While general liability is the most important type of insurance to have, there are several other forms of coverage you should be aware of. Below are some of the most common types of coverage:

Professional Liability Insurance

As a charter fishing professional, you face risks unique to your industry. A professional liability insurance policy designed specifically for your business will ensure that you have adequate protection if you are held liable for mistakes or a failure to perform. If a customer claims that you failed in your duties and takes legal action against you, your professional liability insurance policy will cover your legal costs and any settlements you may need to pay.

Commercial Property Insurance

The various supplies and equipment you use to run your fishing charter business (e.g., a fishing boat) probably required a significant investment on your part. Should your commercial property be damaged or lost, such as in the event of a fire or a major storm, then you may struggle to replace all of it out of your own funds. A commercial property insurance policy would give you the financial resources necessary to replace your property so that you could get back to running your business.

Workers’ Compensation Insurance

If you have fishing guides or other employees that help you operate your fishing charter business, workers’ comp insurance is a necessity. Not only does it help you meet the legal requirements of your state concerning employers, but it also makes sure you have the ability to help your employees get medical treatment for injuries they sustain on the job. An injured employee can get medical care and help with lost wages related to a work injury as long as you have a workers’ comp policy.

Commercial Umbrella Insurance

There are certain situations where the limits of your general liability insurance policy can be exceeded, such as if your business loses a big lawsuit and you are required to pay extensive damages. If all you have is your general liability insurance, then the extra costs beyond your policy limits will have to be paid by you. But with a commercial umbrella insurance policy, you have added protection. The umbrella policy will take over where the general liability insurance leaves off.

Additional Steps To Protect Your Business

Although it’s easy (and essential) to invest in business insurance, it shouldn’t be your only defense.

Here are several things you can do to better protect your fishing charter business:

  • Use legally robust contracts and other business documents. (We offer free templates for some of the most common legal forms.)
  • Set up an LLC or corporation to protect your personal assets. (Visit our step-by-step guides to learn how to form an LLC or corporation in your state.)
  • Stay up to date with business licensing.
  • Maintain your corporate veil.

Fishing Charter Insurance FAQ

Yes, absolutely. You will need to first get a quote from an online business insurance provider like Next Insurance. Next allows you to then purchase a policy immediately and your coverage will be active within 48 hours.

A typical business owner’s policy includes general liability, business interruption, and commercial property insurance. However, BOPs are often customizable, so your agent may recommend adding professional liability, commercial auto, or other types of coverage to your package depending on your company’s needs.

"Business insurance" is a generic term used to describe many different types of coverage a business may need. General liability insurance, on the other hand, is a specific type of coverage that business owners need to protect their assets.

Yes. It is essential to buy business insurance before launching your business, especially since you'll be working with potentially dangerous equipment like charter vessels. Failure to obtain coverage from the first day can put your enterprise in danger, both from disadvantageous events and legal noncompliance.

Legal regulations compel certain types of insurance, such as workers' compensation and commercial auto insurance. Additionally, your business may require other forms of insurance to safeguard against specific risks, like property damage and customer injury.

Not necessarily. Certain exceptions may be written directly into your fishing charter business insurance policy, and some perils may be entirely uninsurable.

Yes, an LLC is meant to create a legal barrier between your business and your personal assets and credit. If you haven’t formed an LLC yet, use our Form an LLC guide to get started.

An LLC doesn’t protect your business assets from lawsuits and liability– that’s where business insurance comes in. Business insurance helps protect your business from liability and risk.