November 2, 2007, Newsletter Issue #87: Insuring Your Vehicle Shipment

Tip of the Week

You have insurance for your vehicle. Your auto shipper has insurance. So you're covered, right? Maybe not.

Most reliable auto shipping companies have policies that cover damage during shipping. However, some policies only cover certain parts of the vehicle, or require a deductible. Ask to see your shipper's insurance certificate.

Check with your own insurer to see whether your own policy covers the vehicle during shipment. Find out whether your own insurance would be considered "primary" or "secondary" in the event of a damage claim -- it could make a big difference to your driving record and your deductible if something goes wrong.

When you receive the vehicle from the shipper, inspect it carefully, including the undercarriage, and start it to make sure it runs. If there is any damage, note it on the bill of lading before you sign for the vehicle.

When sending your vehicle by ship, be aware that most vessels' insurance only covers a total loss -- for instance, if the ship sinks. Your insurer can help you obtain full coverage for any damage during the voyage.

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Jerry Mayo