Besides the Gulf Coast, Texas has over 5,600 square miles of inland water, according to the Texas Almanac. This gives it the largest amount of inland water of the contiguous 48 states. Its water sources provide ample space for recreational water sports, including boating.
However, boating in Texas comes with its risks. Therefore, the state requires boaters to follow strict operational requirements. Furthermore, the chances to take to the water mandates the need for boat insurance.
Boat Insurance in Texas
Texas does not have a law that requires boaters to carry minimum levels of boat insurance. Even though you may not have to carry boat insurance, you still need to. Do not go without coverage.
The risks you face in your boat are like those you face in your car. You are operating a vehicle. Accidents might damage the vehicle, personal property or cause injury to others.
The Texas Department of Insurance says many home insurance policies extend coverage to boats. However:
- Home policies usually only cover boat damages to a limited dollar amount. The policies may also only cover limited scenarios of boat damages. Not every scenario where damage occurs may have coverage.
- Home policies do not include liability coverage for your boat.
Never rely only your home insurance policy to protect all your boating risks.
Specific boat insurance can cover a wider range of risks that might impact you both on and off the water. The policy still might contain exclusions, but it can often devote more funds to damage it does cover.
Furthermore, liability coverage is one of the most important aspects of boat insurance. It can protect you in case you are at-fault in an accident that causes property damage or injury to a third party. It might help those victims of the at-fault accident settle legal claims or medical bills. Liability coverage is one area where boat insurance can help you when home insurance may not.
Other Boater Qualifications in Texas
You can reduce your liability risks by properly and lawfully operating your boat. All Texas boats must have proper title and registration to operate.
Boaters in Texas must be over 13 years old to operate most boats alone. Also, Texas law requires all boaters born after Sept. 1, 1993 to complete and pass a boater education. Boaters born after Sept. 1, 1993 have to carry photo identification and an operational certificate issued by the Texas Parks & Wildlife Department. Boaters born before this date do not have to take the course.
Voyager Insurance Services, Inc. can help you get the boat insurance policy you need. Call us at (972) 712-8000 for a quote on an affordable Dallas boat insurance policy.