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Old 05-20-2018, 12:41 AM   #1
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Insurance for Seaweed

I have a problem. I'd like to obtain insurance for Seaweed (liability only is fine -- something so that I could go into a marina without problems on occasion)

The problem is me: I do not have a driver's license nor have I had one for ten-plus years. I don't remember when mine expired however I quit driving more than ten years ago, about the time of chemo.

I have never driven drunk -- no tickets for that.
Still, when my license came up for renewal a long time ago I opted not to renew.

Now apparently every insurance company requires a driver's license in order to buy boat insurance. That doesn't seem correct. So I asked around and got the name Jon Horton from MTOA. He wrote a policy which was rejected (no license).

My credit score is over 800, and I drive a 5 knot boat.
Do you have any suggestions?

And I really do not want to try for a license. I'm afraid to drive -- it's been a lot of years, and I'm over 60 now. I cannot see me ever driving a car again. If I HAD to, but even the thought gives me knots in my stomach........

Thoughts? Suggestions? (All appreciated)
And thanks!

Seaweed is 23' long
She's a Schucker Gulf Packet model, built in 1983
18hp Kubota 3-cylinder diesel inboard

I've got 15,000 miles at the helm of our 40'er and a few hundred on Seaweed. Never involved in any maritime accidents.

Oh, and I drank two glasses of wine last year (or was it the year before?)
Drinking isn't my thing.

Boat is in Florida.
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Old 05-20-2018, 04:34 AM   #2
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Hi Janice
I can understand not wanting to drive. It can be crazy on the roads. But can you not renew your drivers license without driving? Isnít it just a matter of paying the renewal fee. I know the fee may be exorbitant but it shouldnít involve a driving test until your later years, I would think.
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Old 05-20-2018, 04:57 AM   #3
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Many states issue a picture ID card for non drivers. It should be accepted by the insurance companies as it is suitable for airline travel and as a voter ID. Check with the Florida DMV office.



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Old 05-20-2018, 05:32 AM   #4
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I'm guessing the drivers license is a requirement to prove that the state allows you to operate a motor vehicle (your driving privileges haven't been suspended or revoked by a state). It indicates that you are also healthy enough (with acceptable eye sight ) to operate a motor vehicle. Don't think the state ID card that David referenced above, will satisfy the insurance company. The logic of requiring a driver's license is used by the federal government for flying light sport aircraft. This type of aviation license doesn't require a flight medical, but requires a automobile drivers license to demonstrate you're healthy enough to operate the aircraft.

You might trying emailing BoatUS. They seem to have a pretty good consumer advocacy help department for boating related issues.

Can you put your son, daughter or someone else on the title as co-owner and get the policy in their name?

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Old 05-20-2018, 06:22 AM   #5
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If you put your son or daughter on the boat title, I think the boat should automatically transfer to the survivor upon your death, without paying taxes.
Of course there is the liability issue.... 2 names on the boat, opens you both up to the liability if involved in a accident. Not a good thing if you do not have insurance.
Insurance.... find an attorney who specializes in insurance. He should know of a work around.
No one likes attorneys until one is needed.
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Old 05-20-2018, 06:54 AM   #6
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Janice, it took awhile but, I did learn a few things about that boat.
6 were made, 3 remaining. Yours is a scarce diesel powered version. Nice setup for the interior. Looks like a nice weekend boat.
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Old 05-20-2018, 08:29 AM   #7
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Quote:
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Many states issue a picture ID card for non drivers. It should be accepted by the insurance companies as it is suitable for airline travel and as a voter ID. Check with the Florida DMV office.



David
When I lived in FL I had an extra id for work purposes.

So yes the state of Florida did and may still issue ID's that are pretty much the same as a driver license. My I'd had the same number as my driver's license. The fee was only like $25 iirc. But I already had a state dl so it maybe more starting from scratch.
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Old 05-20-2018, 10:43 AM   #8
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Would it make a difference if you got a USCG Captain's License ?
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Old 05-20-2018, 11:25 AM   #9
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Find an insurance broker and get the definitive answer from them?

Good luck Janice, I hope it works out for you.
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Old 05-20-2018, 12:30 PM   #10
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Yea, second that about checking with a boat insurance broker. They really know the ins and outs about what policies are available. Some may blow you off as this will be a very small policy, but the good ones will be helpful.

And second that bit others posted that it may be cheapest to go get a DL for this purpose only. Here in NC they are good for ten years and cost little, not sure about Fla.
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Old 05-20-2018, 12:51 PM   #11
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Hi Janet. Don't know if this article written by Jeff Siegal will be of help but it might be a start. Good luck. Howard
Attached Files
File Type: pdf Full Time Cruiser Insurance.pdf (2.23 MB, 27 views)
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Old 05-20-2018, 01:02 PM   #12
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I see two possible reasons why the insurance company may have denied the policy. The first may be an issue of an ID. If so, a state issued picture ID would suffice, possibly even a passport.

If the issue is, as was mentioned above, that they want evidence that the state has considered you worthy of operating a vehicle, then that is a bigger problem. Getting your license might not be a big issue if you can find someone that will allow you the use of their car for the test. You would need to take the written test and then the driving test. If you find a nice quiet community somewhere, the test should be relatively stress free.

If you could get word from the insurance companies as to what they are looking for, you would have an idea as to which direction to take.

BTW, I applaud your desire to get liability insurance. I think it is responsible move.
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Old 05-20-2018, 02:49 PM   #13
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My take is they want to see a dirt address which you need to have to get a drivers license. I believe po boxes are no allowed for drivers licenses. We had been using Friday Harbor Marina as an address on our drivers licenses. We went to renew after Sept 11, DMV no longer allowed it. They wanted a physical address. I wouldn’t be surprised if the insurance companies want the same thing.
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Old 05-20-2018, 03:10 PM   #14
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I 'm sure that there are many boats owned through corporations or LLCs. While these may have a land based address, there is no one person who is the owner/operator of the boat. These boats get insured with no one having to show a driver's license.
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Old 05-20-2018, 04:15 PM   #15
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Quote:
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I 'm sure that there are many boats owned through corporations or LLCs. While these may have a land based address, there is no one person who is the owner/operator of the boat. These boats get insured with no one having to show a driver's license.


Banks are getting fussy about such stuff. I am a member of three LLCs. The banks are requiring copies of the driverís license and a signature for all members of the LLC for the business accounts, not just signers and managing members. I woulnít be surprised to see insurance companies do the same now.
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Old 05-20-2018, 04:15 PM   #16
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I 'm sure that there are many boats owned through corporations or LLCs. While these may have a land based address, there is no one person who is the owner/operator of the boat. These boats get insured with no one having to show a driver's license.
the last 2 liveaboard policies I have had were very specific as to who was the regular operator(s) or who was allowed to operate the boat.

I bet there are a few brokers that can get Janice insurance. A few marine insurers are reasonable and dont play the silly games of insurers that are barely into the marine business.
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Old 05-20-2018, 04:33 PM   #17
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All I can suggest is shop more insurers and may have to give in and get a license as I'm seeing exactly what dhays referenced in many places insisting on driver's licenses and other things that are not legally required. I know companies insisting on driver's licenses from new employees and claiming they need them for their I-9. It is not a requirement, just one option. I was involved recently in setting up a trust account and my bank I've used the longest would not do so based on the trust agreement but we went to another bank that their legal department immediately approved it.
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Old 05-20-2018, 04:54 PM   #18
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For ~20 years we used a a mail forwarding address that was a business condo building, at one time is was residential. A few times a year we’d get a call back when we gave the address as our residence because it was flagged as a comercial property. We worked around it but today it seems like you need a land base address. The businesses that are/we’re questioning the address, I don’t blame them. If something goes south, they’re just trying to protect themselves.
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Old 05-22-2018, 05:46 PM   #19
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Alas AusCan... were it only that simple. Unfortunately it's been so long since I had a license I'm no longer in their computer system. I've got to start fresh.

Argh.

Quote:
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Hi Janice
I can understand not wanting to drive. It can be crazy on the roads. But can you not renew your drivers license without driving? Isn’t it just a matter of paying the renewal fee. I know the fee may be exorbitant but it shouldn’t involve a driving test until your later years, I would think.
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Old 05-22-2018, 05:50 PM   #20
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Thanks Cap'n David. I tried something similar. In lieu of the driver's license I sent in a copy of my Passport. It was rejected. (Having seen the photo, I can well understand that!)

Quote:
Originally Posted by djmarchand View Post
Many states issue a picture ID card for non drivers. It should be accepted by the insurance companies as it is suitable for airline travel and as a voter ID. Check with the Florida DMV office.
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