Unarmed aerial vehicles, or drones, have surged in popularity over the last several years, but it might interest you to know that the idea behind them stretches back all the way to 1782. In that year, the first unmanned vehicle flight took place, courtesy of the Montgolfier brothers. And in 1848, Austria’s military was the first to use a drone.
Since then, the idea and technology have evolved (the end of the 19th century marks the first time a drone was equipped to take photos), and today people use drones for both recreational and commercial purposes.
As drones rise in popularity, there is plenty of information available on the laws you need to abide by, but not much on insurance. That doesn’t mean insurance isn’t crucial for your drone.
You want to insure it in case one of three things happen:
1. Your drone is damaged.
2. Your drone causes property damage or injury.
3. Your drone is lost or stolen.
In fact, in Minnesota all drones must be insured as required by law. They also must be registered with the FAA and with the Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT). You must be at least 13-years-old to register a drone, you must register it before its first flight, and you are required to pay an annual fee.
If you are using your drone for recreational reasons, your homeowners insurance may cover it, but check with your insurance agent to confirm.
If, however, you are using your drone for commercial purposes and you have business insurance, it’s important to note that your drone is not recognized as standard business property. So, that policy will not cover your drone and you will need separate drone insurance.
Many insurance companies are now starting to offer commercial drone insurance, which typically contains two parts:
1. Liability (which covers damage and claims to third parties)
2. Hull damage (which covers damage related to your drone)
Each company’s policy is a bit different, so talk to your agent to ensure you understand how your policy is structured.
Since drones have become much more affordable, they have also become attractive to several industries such as:
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There are a lot of moving parts when it comes to drones and insurance. If you want more clarification or have specific questions, please contact Caveo Insurance. I’m happy to provide more information.