We can suggest several reasons for making sure that your cargo insurance covers the major contingencies.
In the event of an accident, even if the vessel is saved, many of the containers may be severely damaged.
If you're insured, your cargo insurance company will handle your claim promptly.
When a vessel's journey is being threatened by a major peril, the ship owner is likely to declare General Average. This means that in the event of loss or damage, everyone who has a stake in the voyage — including the cargo owners, even if their own cargo is not lost or damaged — must pay their share of the cost of saving the vessel and its cargo.
If you're insured, the insurance company will issue an Average Guarantee and you will provide an Average Bond. This assures the prompt release of your cargo while your insurer takes care of the General Average contribution.
Without adequate insurance, the adjusters will likely request a cash deposit from you of a proportion of the value of your cargo, and your cargo will be held in trust until you have paid your part — which can take months or even years.
While the vessel is stranded, shippers and receivers alike will experience the uncertainty of not knowing the situation with their cargo. To compound this, shippers may find themselves with the additional uncertainty of delays in retrieving their cargo or handling their claim. Marine insurance is a specialized industry where the processes involved can be complicated, and requests and terminology difficult to understand.
If you're insured, you know that your cargo will be released promptly with the appropriate securities, and any claim will be handled promptly. Insurers will assure that claims are handled smoothly and you will know that your interests are being properly protected.
The Actual Value of Cargo Insurance
We encourage importers to contact Charles M Schayer & Company about the importance of cargo insurance. Lost or damaged cargo is only part of the story. General Average is more common than most people realize, and adds up to approximately 10% of the losses suffered by marine insurers. This is because of the size and frequency of General Average claims, which are generally unavoidable.
To complicate matters even more, owners of uninsured cargo have little chance to recovering their losses if the carrying vessel was not at fault.
Charles M Schayer & Company
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