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Your family can spend long hours enjoying your boat on the water. Even the younger members of your family, your teenagers, might become tempted to take the boat out for a spin.

However, it’s important to remember that boats are an expensive piece of machinery. They come with operational risks. When your teen decides to operate the craft with or without your supervision, they face risks. A teen’s relative inexperience and youth may lead to hazards and even boating accidents. Should that happen, boat insurance might come into play.

To ensure that a teen has a safe experience on the water, it is up to the parent or guardian to be their advocate. Make sure you take the time to insure the teen and get them the right sailing qualifications.

Operating Qualifications for Minors

Boating requires different qualifications based on your location. Most states require operators to register their boats. Some may require insurance or operating licenses. In the case of minors who boat, requirements usually differ from those for boaters over 18 years old.

  • Some states usually ban all minor boaters from operating a boat until they reach a certain age.
  • States might require that young people take and pass a boating safety course. Boating safety courses introduce young boaters to safety procedures needed to sail. This can help a youth boater better learn how to address potential problems.
  • Many states require minors to carry certificates that say the minor qualifies to operate the boat.

When teaching your teen to boat, always check the state’s operating procedures for minors. Doing so can help you make sure your child continues to boat legally.

Insuring Minors

Most boating insurance policies will insure minors who operate boats. However, make sure that your policy specifically names your teen as an operator of your boat. Ensure that your boat insurer knows that your teen has all the qualifications to pilot the craft. You can often remain the policyholder and primary operator.

Sometimes, your boat insurance provider might increase your rates because you have a teen operator on your policy. The increases will often be minimal as long as the teen maintains a safe operational record. However, you might have an option to mitigate these costs. If you can prove that the teen (and others on the policy) has passed a safety course, you might qualify for a discount.

We’ve got you covered. Call Williams & Associates Inc at (317) 549-8994 for a fast, free Indianapolis boat insurance quote.

Posted 4:33 PM  View Comments

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