Some Of Our Frequently Asked Questions

What does “All Risk,” mean and what does it cover?

“All Risk” means the cargo is insured on an all risks basis against external physical loss or damage while in the ordinary course of transit. Major exclusions include, but not limited to; loss due to delay, inherent vice, improper packaging, rust, oxidation, discoloration and corrosion, ordinary wear and tear, and any pre-existing conditions, Non-Approved or restricted commodities may attract a deductible or special terms. Refrigerated (Reefer) cargo/Temperature Controlled cargo is subject to the refrigeration breakdown/derangement clause.

When does Cargo Insurance start and end?

Coverage applies on a warehouse to warehouse basis between origin and destination, including any inland multimodal transit between the warehouse and port.

How much does it cost?

Whitehall endeavors to provide its clients the lowest cost of risk possible without compromising coverage. Traditional cargo insurance pricing is based on a rate per $100 of value insured. EXAMPLE. A shipment with an insured value of $100,000 with a .20 per $100 rate would cost $200.  This is also often expressed as a percentage. $100,000 x .20% = $200.

Alternatively, some Whitehall clients favor a fixed price per shipment with a fixed limit of liability. EXAMPLE:  $25,000 Coverage regardless of the value of the product for a fixed price of $60 per shipment.

Is there any insurance coverage that I don’t have to pay for?

No, cargo insurance provided through the Bill of Lading applies only with an associated charge. As an Ocean Carrier, ocean carriers have a limited legal liability obligation to Shipper/Consignee customers in accordance with the Carriage of Goods by Sea Act (COGSA). To an extent  the carrier insures itself against this exposure but the insurance is for the benefit of the carrier, not the cargo owner. The COGSA liability of the Ocean Carrier requires that the Ocean Carrier indemnifies the cargo owner for loss or damage caused to the cargo in restricted circumstances and then further limits that financial responsibility on a per package basis.

Are there any deductibles?

Yes, we strongly encourage our clients to accept a deductible as pricing is almost always more favorable than without a deductible. Deductibles typically range from $100 to $1,000, and higher for cargo owners with greater capacity to assume risk.

Is cover provided for sales lost due to delay?

No – Consequential damages such as losses due to delay are, as is customary, not recoverable under this policy.

Does the cargo insurance cover provide cover for the equipment (chassis/container/genset) as well as the cargo?

No – Coverage is only provided for the product within the container, not the equipment used to transport the goods.

Does the Cargo Insurance cover cargo damaged in the container due to shifting or loading?

Generally, cargo loaded by an independent third party, is covered against damage due to load shifting. Where loading is performed by the shipper or a representative of the shipper, damage due to load shifting may be excluded due to improper/inadequate packaging of the load.

Is cover provided against cargo damage resulting from a motor vehicle accident en route to a customer or port?

If the inland movement is in the ordinary course of transit between warehouse and warehouse then cargo loss/damage caused in accidents to the carrying conveyance are covered.

Is cargo covered if the container is stolen from the Customer’s/Consignee’s facility after delivery?

No – Coverage does not extend beyond delivery, unless agreed to in advance by the insurer.

Can I insure for partial value or not include insurance and freight in insured value?

The vast majority of cargo policies require cargo owners to insure for the full value, typically calculated at Cost + Insurance + Freight + 10%. As an option, Whitehall offers shippers the ability to insure shipments at a portion of the value in exchange for a flat premium.

Can I insure for more than cargo value?

When specifically negotiated with Underwriters, cargo can be insured for more than the actual value, but typically only up to a certain extent.

If my shipment is stolen or completely destroyed – does coverage include total loss?

Subject to policy terms and conditions, coverage under an open cargo policy includes both partial and total losses.

How do you determine value of privately owned vehicles, motorcycles or boats?

In the absence of a commercial invoice or bill of sale, valuation is based on the fair market value of the automobile, motorcycle or boat at the time of shipping, as determined by a reputable third party valuation company.

How do you determine value of household goods and personal effects?

Valuation of each household good or personal effect item is based on actual cash value of the items, at the time of shipping, where actual cash value is the cost to replace the lost or damaged item with other property of like kind and quality. Claims will be adjusted based on the lesser of the cost of repairing or replacing the lost or damaged item with another item of like kind and quality.

Who do I contact if I need to file a claim, and when do I need to contact them?

All claims are to be reported as soon as you are aware. If you have a Cargo Certificate of Insurance, contact the surveyor listed on the reverse of the certificate. In addition, please notify Whitehall at claims@whitehallinsuranceagency.com and/or complete the first notice of claim form found on www.whitehallinsuranceagency.com.

Can you cover multiple shipments moving over different vessels/bills of lading?

Yes, absolutely. We can arrange insurance on your product moving by air, ocean, rail, truck, hand-carried and even if moving by spacecraft.

Can all cargoes/commodities be covered by the Cargo Insurance?

With few exceptions, most commodities can be insured under a marine cargo policies. Here are a few items that typically are not insurable:

  • Accounts, Bills, Evidence of Debt, Deeds, Notes, and Securities
  • Bullion, Money, Bank Notes, Currency, Coins, Checks, Credit Cards, Bonds
  • Negotiable Documents

Can you cover multiple shipments moving for a specific project over a period of time on one “blanket” certificate?

Typically “No”, although all containers under a project can be considered for insurance, arranged on a per container basis.

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