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New Jersey Doesn’t Require Boat Insurance. Get it Anyway.

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New Jersey Doesn’t Require Boat Insurance. Get it Anyway.

A boat sailing on the ocean under a blue sky.

“The boat is safer anchored at the port, but that is not the aim of boats.”
― Paulo Coelho, The Pilgrimage


Did you know that you are not required to have boat insurance to operate a vessel on the water in New Jersey? In fact, the Garden State is not alone as most states do not mandate insurance coverage in order to operate a boat or personal watercraft (PWC). Boat Insurance is not required in neighboring Pennsylvania or New York, either.

Beyond the coverage for physical damage to your vessel and liability included in a typical boat insurance policy, additional coverages you may consider include:

So if it’s not required, why bother with the expense? The answer is the same as similar questions about other types of insurance: Because accidents happen.

You may have invested a lot of money in your boat. For many, their boat is their second-most expensive purchase after their house. Boat insurance protects that investment and also covers you for liability, in case others are injured or you damage someone else’s property while operating your boat.

Taking an uninsured boat on the water is not a wise decision.

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According to the Insurance Information Institute, there are thousands of recreational boating accidents each year, which can be costly in injuries and damages. In a recent safety article by the III, contributing factors to boating disasters were listed as, “traveling too fast for water or weather conditions, driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, failing to follow boating rules and regulations, carelessness and inexperience.â€

Generally, boat insurance policies cover liability, damage to the boat, along with costs to remove the boat (if it should sink), and liability from fuel spills. The size, type, value of the craft, and the water in which you use it factor into how much you will pay for insurance coverage. Plus, there are numerous optional/additional coverages and discounts that may apply in your unique circumstance.

  • Personal Property – covers personal items and sporting/fishing equipment, navigation and radar systems, etc.
  • Emergency Towing & Assistance – reimburses you for costs of emergency assistance.

Be sure to ask your insurance agent whether your boat insurance policy covers your trailer. Your agent should also be able to discuss whether an Agreed Value policy or actual cash value policy is best for you.

As with any insurance policy, make sure you understand exactly what perils are covered and what your policy limits are. If you have questions about boat/yacht/personal watercraft insurance, call Glenn Insurance at 1-888-OK GLENN.

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