Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Check Your Marine Insurance

Until recent events, most of us probably thought pirates were a major league baseball team or something to see at the movies. Guess what? Pirates are alive and well in the Gulf of Aden. Things did end badly for three of the pirates when the Navy snipers killed them during their rescue of Maersk ship captain, Richard Phillips, but why does this concern importers and exporters? The answer is simple, marine insurance. "Premiums are going to go up because the pirates are going to become a little more vicious and hold out for more money," states Paul Keane, a partner at Cichanowicz, Callan, Keane, Vengrow & Textor LLP, who specializes in maritime cases. As evidenced this week, the pirates have become more violent.

With increased incidents of hijacking and violence, the marine insurance risks increase. Ship owners are being forced to carry more insurance and are bound to pass this cost on to their customers. Many importers and exporters also carry insurance on their marine cargo and those rates will rise. Now is the time to do a little checkup on your insurance coverage. Contact your broker, insurance carrier, or other party responsible for procuring marine insurance to find out more about how the pirates will cost your company more money.

HERE for a list of marine insurance companies and more information about maritime law.

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