Preparing for a refit

With the season winding down, the customary winter yard periods are now in full swing. Whether you’re preparing for routine winter maintenance or some more serious work, it would be prudent to advise your insurers. You should disclose the yard where the work is being undertaken, what is being done (in particular any hot work), the anticipated yard period and also seek a copy of the yard’s ship repairer’s liability.

Depending on where you are in the world, yards offer a varying degree of ship repairer’s liability. In some cases, yards provide no cover and instead ask you to extend your yacht insurance to cover the yard’s liabilities by way of a ‘Waiver of Subrogation’. This means that your insurers have no recourse against the yard should they damage your yacht whilst in their care. This unfortunately increases the risk exposure for your insurers and may result in additional premium being charged.


Some other considerations to think about….

  • Whilst most work can be noted and agreed by your yacht insurers, work involving a change in the yacht’s length, a serious contract price and/or a significant time period spent in the yard (say in excess of a year), may be better suited to a builder’s risk policy.
  • If you are planning to undertake work in a facility with contractors, the chances are they will have very limited insurance and no repairer’s liability insurance so ensure you have extended your yacht insurance.
  • Likewise, if the yard is employing subcontractors, check that they fall under the yard’s ship repairer’s liability or are included within the waiver of subrogation that has been agreed.
  • If hot work is being undertaken, ensure the relevant permits have been issued with the relevant fire fighting precautions in place during the hot work. This may be a warranty that your insurers apply when noting the yard period.

If you are in any doubt, or have any questions about insurance cover whilst in the yard, check with your insurers to ensure cover is not prejudiced and the right cover is in place.