Illinois Boat Insurance

Get a complete analysis of Illinois boat insurance costs, coverages & companies.

Christine Lacagnina Written by Christine Lacagnina
Christine Lacagnina
Written by Christine Lacagnina

Christine Lacagnina has written thousands of insurance-based articles for by authoring consumable, understandable content.

Chicago cityscape and Chicago River during summer. Find Illinois Boat Insurance.

Find the Best Boat Insurance Rates & Companies in Illinois

With its proximity to Lake Michigan, Illinois is home to many recreational and professional boaters. If you own a boat, it's imperative to protect your vessel with a complete boat insurance policy. Without this coverage, you could end up having to pay for lawsuits and other possible disasters on your own.

Fortunately, an Illinois independent insurance agent can help you get equipped with all the boat insurance you need. They'll get you matched to the ideal policy for your unique vessel. First, though, here's a breakdown of Illinois boat insurance requirements and more.

Best Boat Insurance Companies in Illinois

Finding boat insurance in Illinois can be easy when you know where to look. That's why we've put together a list of some of the best boat insurance companies in Illinois for you. When you're ready to find quality boat insurance near you, check into these top-rated carriers first.

  1. Travelers: This carrier offers boat insurance and several other types of personal and business insurance. Travelers also has outstanding AM Best and Better Business Bureau (BBB) ratings and offers many discounts.
  2. Nationwide: This carrier offers boat insurance and several other kinds of personal and business insurance. Nationwide has excellent ratings from both AM Best and the BBB and provides 24/7 claims reporting services.
  3. Safeco: This carrier offers boat insurance and many other types of personal insurance for various vehicles and watercraft. Safeco has great ratings from AM Best and the BBB, offers 24/7 claims reporting, and provides free online quotes.

An independent insurance agent in Illinois can help you find high-quality boat insurance in your area by shopping and comparing quotes from many different carriers.

What Boat Insurance in Illinois Can Cover

You might select several types of coverage to complete your boat insurance policy. In Illinois, you'll often have the following list of coverages to choose from:

  • Boating liability insurance: This can pay for lawsuits and related expenses arising from third-party claims of bodily injury or personal property damage caused by your boat.
  • Collision insurance: Pays for damage to your boat from a collision with another object, regardless of fault. 
  • Comprehensive insurance: Pays for damage to your boat due to a non-collision event such as a flood or theft. 
  • Fuel spill/wreckage cleanup coverage: This can cover wreckage clean-ups and clean up any pollutants left behind if you're responsible for a boating accident.
  • Medical payments insurance: This optional coverage can pay for medical expenses you and your passengers may incur due to a boating accident, regardless of fault.
  • Equipment insurance: This endorsement covers loss or damage to the equipment you keep on your boat, including fishing gear, GPS devices, and towables.
  • Uninsured/underinsured boaters insurance: This covers the costs of damage to your boat, medical expenses, etc., if you get into a collision with another boater who doesn't carry enough insurance of their own to reimburse you.

Your Illinois independent insurance agent can help you assemble a boat insurance policy that includes each type of protection you need most.

Is Boat Insurance Required in Illinois?

Though car insurance is required in most states, this isn't the case for boat insurance. Illinois doesn't require boat insurance by law, either. 

However, many boaters find they're required to carry coverage by their lenders if they finance their vessels. You might also be required to have boat insurance if you plan to dock your boat at a marina.

Without boat insurance, you might have to pay potentially hefty losses out of your own pocket that can arise from many different disasters. Collisions, lawsuits, theft, and vandalism are just a few threats that can cost you thousands of dollars or even more if you lack boat insurance. So, even if coverage isn't technically required in your state, you might still want to get it.

What Boat Insurance in Illinois Will Not Cover

Boat insurance comes with its own set of coverage exclusions, just like any other policy. In Illinois, boat insurance often won't cover the following:

  • Insect and animal infestations
  • Accidents caused by unnamed operators
  • Damage to or theft of accessories like lifeboats or anchors (unless you purchased endorsements) 
  • Damage caused by mold or marine life
  • Normal wear and tear of the boat
  • Issues arising from faulty machinery

Take some time to review the list of exclusions in your specific boat insurance policy to avoid the hassle of filing claims that are bound to get denied.


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Average Cost of Boat Insurance in Illinois

Boat insurance tends to be very affordable in Illinois. The average cost of boat insurance in Illinois is just $263 annually. However, the cost of your policy might vary based on the following factors:

  • The type of boat, including its engine size, make, model, and length
  • The amount and types of coverage selected
  • Where the boat is stored while not in use
  • The policy's deductible amount
  • Your driving record and personal claims history

An independent insurance agent in Illinois can shop and compare quotes to find you the most affordable boat insurance near you.

What Boat Insurance Discounts Are Available in Illinois?

Most boat insurance companies offer a number of discounts for boaters. You might qualify for any of the following boat insurance discounts in Illinois:

  • Loyalty discounts: Staying with the same boat insurance company for several years can earn you a discount over time.
  • Security discounts: Many boat insurance companies offer discounts to boaters who protect their vessels against theft, etc., with security devices.
  • Lay-up discounts: This discount is typically available if you only use your boat during summer.
  • Boater safety course discounts: Completing an approved boater safety course can often earn you a discount.
  • Bundling discounts: If you bundle your boat insurance with home insurance, auto insurance, etc., through the same insurance company, you can often earn a discount on each policy.
  • Affiliation discounts: Being affiliated with a certain company or group can often help you earn a discount.

Your Illinois independent insurance agent can apply any discounts you qualify for to your boat insurance so you save the most money possible on your coverage.

Popular Questions about Illinois Boat Insurance

The state of Illinois doesn't require boat insurance by law. However, various marinas require boat insurance before you can dock your vessel there.

In Illinois, boat insurance costs an average of just $263 annually. However, boat insurance premiums can vary depending on the type of boat you have and other factors.

We found that Travelers is the best boat insurance company in Illinois. Travelers earned our top pick thanks to its coverage options, discounts, customer service ratings, and more.

If you cause an accident while towing your boat, your personal boat insurance policy can pay for physical damage to your property and third-party property. It can also pay for medical expenses to yourself, your passengers, and third parties who were injured in the incident.

You don't need to have boat insurance by state law in Illinois. However, if you finance your boat, your lender will likely require you to have coverage.

Illinois boat insurance covers whatever you design your policy to cover. You might choose to buy coverage for physical damage related to collisions, protection against lawsuit costs, and many others.

Illinois independent insurance agents can help you find the boat insurance you need from a top-rated local carrier. Independent insurance agents work hard to find quality coverage at the most affordable rate. They'll shop and compare boat insurance quotes from a number of different carriers for you. 

And down the road, they can help you file boat insurance claims or update your coverage as needed. Your agent can help you find boat insurance in Chicago or wherever you reside.

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