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PWC Insurance FAQ

What Is PWC Insurance?

PWC stands for “personal watercraft,” which is a small stand-up or sit-down craft, also called a water scooter. The three name brands you might recognize as PWCs are Sea-Doo, WaveRunner and Jet Ski. PWC insurance protects your investment in your personal watercraft if it is damaged or destroyed in an accident or theft. It also protects you against liability claims in the event that you cause harm to another person or their property.

To learn more about PWC insurance, contact a local independent agent in the Trusted Choice® network. A local member agent in your area can help you compare PWC insurance quotes and find the right coverage for your needs.

What Does PWC Insurance Cover?

PWC insurance covers some or all of the following, depending on the details of your policy:

  • Physical damage to your PWC
  • Property damage you cause to another person’s dock, boat/craft or other items
  • Bodily injury or death you are responsible for
  • Injury you incur from an accident caused by an uninsured boater
  • Watersports liability for a wake boarder or water skier which you are towing
  • Medical payments
  • Wreck removal or towing
  • Personal property coverage
  • Accessory insurance for supplies and personal items on board
  • PWC trailer coverage

You can typically customize your policy by increasing the amount of coverage or adding additional endorsements. For example, you might want increased liability coverage to protect your assets in the event that you become involved in a lawsuit after an accident you cause on your PWC.

How Does PWC Insurance Work?

PWC coverage can protect your Jet Ski, WaveRunner or Sea-Doo from damage such as collision, theft and fire. It may also protect you, the driver, if you are responsible for damages to property or bodily injury you cause to another person. Your PWC coverage can also pay medical costs if you get injured while operating your PWC.

If you are in an accident with your PWC and you have appropriate coverage in place, you can contact your agent or insurance company and file a claim. Let’s say, for example, that you have a two-person PWC, and both you and your passenger are injured in an accident caused by another PWC driver. Your PWC is damaged beyond repair. In this example, you can file a claim with your insurance company for your medical costs and the replacement of your PWC, if you have that coverage in place. The amount you receive would be based on your medical costs and the amount of damage you are covered for, after you pay your deductible.

In another scenario, if you cause an accident or a severe injury, the other party can file a liability claim with your insurance company. Your PWC insurance would pay that person’s bodily injury costs and/or property damage costs, and would potentially cover your legal expenses if you are taken to court. Again, the amount of coverage available for the claim will depend on the amount of coverage you purchase.

How Much Does PWC Insurance Cost?

The average annual cost of PWC coverage can cost anywhere from $150 to $500 per year for a typical plan. The cost of PWC insurance depends on a number of factors such as:

  • Year, make and model of the PWC
  • Horsepower, engine type and maximum operating speed
  • Value of your PWC
  • Any modifications made to the PWC
  • Boater safety courses you’ve taken

Additionally, your PWC insurance rates will depend on the amount and type of coverage you choose. If you only want to cover your craft in the event it is damaged or you cause injury to another person, you can get a minimum amount of coverage. You will pay more for insurance if you also want full replacement cost coverage for your Jet Ski and increased liability limits.

Is PWC Insurance Required?

PWC insurance requirements vary by state, so be sure to check on the laws where you live. Many states do require liability insurance coverage to cover your legal responsibility if you cause injury to another person or harm to another person’s property.

Most states require that you have a valid driver’s license and most states have a minimum age requirement for driving or riding a PWC. If you financed the purchase of your PWC, your lender will most likely require you to purchase comprehensive PWC insurance. You may also be required to have personal watercraft insurance if you dock your craft in a marina.

If you own or are purchasing a Sea-Doo, WaveRunner or Jet Ski, it is a good idea to get PWC insurance for your personal protection, whether or not it is required by law. To find out what the requirements are in your state and get PWC insurance quotes, contact a local independent agent in the Trusted Choice network.

How Much PWC Insurance Do I Need?

The amount of insurance coverage you need for your PWC will be based on the type of personal watercraft you own, the horsepower it has, and other factors. Anytime you are investing in a vehicle that can travel at high speed, it’s a good idea to get plenty of coverage, both for damage to your vehicle and for the costs of liability claims if you are at fault in an accident.

Here are some guidelines to help you choose how much PWC insurance coverage to buy:

  • Consider buying the maximum liability coverage, for example $500,000.
  • Get the highest amount of medical payments coverage, typically $10,000.
  • Get “replacement cost coverage” for your PWC in case it is totaled in a crash.
  • Consider buying coverage for your personal property on board, typically up to $5,000.
  • Ask a knowledgeable agent for assistance choosing the appropriate amount of comprehensive coverage and other coverage types, such as coverage for vandalism, your PWC trailer, fuel spill coverage, towing and wreckage removal, roadside assistance and uninsured boaters coverage.

When you begin comparing PWC insurance quotes, you will find that there are bare-bones policies that will cover a certain amount of property damage to your PWC and a certain amount of liability coverage. From there, you can typically increase your limits and add on additional coverage as you see fit. A local agent in the Trusted Choice network can help you choose the amount of coverage you need and compare PWC insurance quotes.

Does PWC Insurance Cover Other Riders?

PWC insurance plans typically cover not only you but your passengers as well. Be sure you check the specifics of you policy. You may need to add medical payments coverage as a separate endorsement on the policy. It’s also important to know whether other riders are covered if you lend your personal watercraft for someone else to use.

Where Can I Get PWC Insurance?

You can find a range of PWC coverage options and policies from an independent agent who lives in your area. Find a local agent in the Trusted Choice network today for help comparing PWC quotes and coverage options from different carriers. Your agent will help you get your questions answered about PWC insurance requirements in your state, and help you find the most affordable rates.

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