Inland Marine Insurance
On-The-Move Property Insurance for Retailers

Inland Marine Insurance: What It Is and How It Protects Retailers

We'll admit it: Inland Marine Insurance has one of the most confusing names in the insurance world. Given how jargon-filled the insurance industry can be, that's saying something.

What exactly is Inland Marine Insurance? It's a Property Insurance policy that covers a retailer's portable goods, equipment, and supplies, and can offer coverage for some specialty and high-value property.

What Inland Marine Is

What Is Inland Marine Insurance?

Why is it called Inland Marine? The quick version is that hundreds of years ago merchants wanted a way to insure their goods when they unloaded them from boats and transported them inland. Thus, a policy called Inland Marine Insurance was created.

Nowadays, this coverage covers losses that occur when equipment and property is being transported or placed in a temporary location. In addition, Inland Marine may help cover specialty property like art and jewelry, insuring it from costly…

  • Theft.
  • Burglary.
  • Fire damage.
  • Water damage.

Over its history, Inland Marine Insurance has adapted to cover all kinds of situations, making it a versatile policy that can be handy for some retail businesses.

Many retailers won't need this specialty coverage because their property can be insured with a traditional Commercial Property Insurance policy.

How Inland Marine Works

How Does Inland Marine Insurance Work?

Say you run an art gallery. On opening night of a new collection, one of the patrons lights up a cigarette in your gallery. The smoke sets off the fire sprinklers, which rain down gallons of water on patrons and ruin the paintings displayed on the wall. Many of the paintings were valued between $5,000 and $10,000. Your gallery could be on the hook for substantial damages.

This is a nightmare situation, but fortunately Inland Marine Insurance may cover the cost of the damaged paintings. Your insurance won't be able to do anything about all the soaking wet gallery-goers, but it can offer you important financial protection. Just like your Property Insurance, Inland Marine Insurance may reimburse you for losses to the items covered on your policy.

Specialty Coverage Included

Specialty Coverage Included with Inland Marine Insurance

Inland Marine Insurance is one of the more "flexible" insurance policies as it can be customized to offer financial protection for losses that occur to all sorts of specialty and rare property, including…

  • Artwork. Whether you run an art gallery or just hang expensive art at your store, Inland Marine may cover some of the losses that occur to fine art at your property.
  • Fine jewelry. Jewelry that your business sells, stores, repairs, or transports can be insured with Inland Marine.
  • Musical instruments. Because instruments can cost thousands of dollars, musical stores and resale shops may want insurance cover these instruments.
  • Accounts receivable. Say a fire destroys your computers and you lose all your accounts receivable data. When property damage and loss of records prevents you from collecting on accounts receivable, Inland Marine may reimburse your losses.
  • Goods being shipped to customers. With so many retailers relying on ecommerce, Inland Marine may include coverage for theft that occurs while a package in transit in the mail to your customers. For jewelers that mail fine jewelry to your customers across the country, this can be important coverage.
When To Consider Inland Marine

When Should Retailers Consider Inland Marine Insurance?

For most businesses, a Property Insurance policy is probably sufficient to cover their inventory, equipment, and other store property. However, some retailers — namely art galleries and jewelers — may want to consider Inland Marine Insurance because of the specialty coverage it offers.

Because Inland Marine Insurance can cover property that your customers or clients place in your care, an art gallery could get important coverage in case an artist's paintings are stolen, damaged, or vandalized while hanging in the gallery.

Jewelers often sign up for a specialized Marine Insurance policy called Jewelers Block Insurance, which covers their precious metals, gemstones, and expensive jewelry.

If you're unsure if your business should sign up for Inland Marine Insurance, don't hesitate to contact Insureon's retail insurance agents.

Who Needs Inland Marine

Do You Need Property Insurance and Inland Marine Insurance?

Say you're a jeweler that signs up for Inland Marine Insurance. Should you also get Property Insurance? You should definitely consider it because Inland Marine won't cover damages to your store itself and other property you own.

For instance, if a storm blows a tree limb into your front window, Property Insurance may help cover these losses — Inland Marine Insurance wouldn't. If a fire damages your building, Inland Marine Insurance may cover your fine jewelry, but it wouldn't reimburse you for repairs to your store, the cost to replace your display cases, furniture, and other property.

Inland Marine Insurance is more of a supplemental policy that some retailers might want if their inventory is highly valuable or they frequently transport equipment and property.

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