Rest Insured

The role of insurance is vital to your camp’s overall risk management plan because it provides the resource needed to fund the losses a camp may incur.

The right insurance means longevity for your camp. © Can Stock Photo Inc./igordutina

This article offers insights and tips in understanding the role insurance plays, selecting a viable insurance broker, and acquiring adequate insurance coverage.

The purchase of an insurance policy to pay claims is a function of risk management called “Risk Transfer.” In other words, should a loss occur, the camp will transfer all or most of the financial loss to the insurance company, while paying only a deductible if selected.

This is necessary to protect the longevity of the camp due to the magnitude of liability and property claims, often reaching into the millions of dollars.

The amount of the premium is often regulated by the camp’s choice of maximum limits and deductible options. These options can either raise or lower the premium, and should be made in consideration of the camp’s financial ability to self-fund losses up to certain limits.

It is recommended you first determine the camp’s financial threshold for self-funding losses, then select insurance deductibles and limits to match this threshold.

Selecting the proper insurance coverage can be daunting for many camp professionals often burdened with wearing too many hats. Therefore, wisdom urges the selection of a qualified agent, who can then be entrusted to select the best possible insurance policy, coverage, and carrier.

In selecting brokers and carriers, here are two recommendations.

First, agents are not all created equal in their knowledge of camping, their experience in working with camps, or their capacity to insure the scope of your camp into the future. Therefore, I recommend you identify an agent’s years of experience in working with the camping industry, and the number of camps insured by an agency.

Second, while relationships and loyalties with “friends of camp” that can offer insurance services may prove advantageous, they may be equally detrimental. Ensure that this relationship is further supported by the agent’s ability to secure adequate insurance markets as well as understand camp risk.

The question asked repeatedly without fail is, “How much insurance does my camp need?” Of course, I generally respond that if I, or anyone, could answer that question, then we would write that book and retire.

Perhaps a more legitimate question is, “What coverage and limits should my camp have so that a loss will not spell financial disaster?”

Insurance is commonly viewed in reference to coverage type, coverage limits, and duration. So, let’s examine some general camp insurance schemes to gain insight on how we can utilize insurance as a tool in a risk management plan.

Property insurance is certainly a must, given the frequency of damage to property in the U.S. and the cost of labor and supplies. Coverage limits should accurately reflect what it would cost to replace the property value today.

Therefore, when considering these limits, do not factor in volunteer labor or donated supplies, as this will result in an inaccurate calculation, giving rise to a severe “under-insured” outcome. A knowledgeable agent can assist with a cost analysis of the property. The duration of property coverage is usually one year, and the deductible is applied per incident.

Included in your property insurance category are three important coverages: Inland Marine, Business Interruption, and Leased Equipment.

▪ Inland Marine sounds like marine coverage, but it entails much more. It focuses coverage on specific movable items, such as watercraft, data-processing equipment, golf carts, tractors, lawn equipment, and other high-value items. Generally, the deductible is lower on this type of equipment.

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