Mega Yacht at anchorCARIIBBEAN LIGHTBOXChoosing insurance for your crew could be a more complicated job than you originally imagined. There is a lot of research to be done, quotes to be reviewed, and conversations to be had when deciding on what the best insurance options are for your crew. After all, crew insurance is not crew insurance, there is not one solution for all. That may not make much sense, but let me explain.

Having your yacht crew covered with proper insurance goes more in depth than having just one kind of insurance, or trying to pick the best price between two policies. There are several different policies that you should consider if you are the decision maker. Whether you are a Yacht Owner, Yacht Captain, or the person who has been delegated the responsibility of selecting the insurance for everyone on board, we are here to help!

Medical/Health Insurance

Medical insurance can speak for itself. Many of us are familiar with it because of the amount of times that we use it. However, there are many different aspects of a plan to consider. What’s the deductible? Is there a co-pay? What about co-insurance? Does it include dental and vision? If you feel overwhelmed, please feel free to contact us for assistance and guidance on what plan would fit your yacht crew best.

Life insurance

While having life insurance is a personal option, there are yachts that include life insurance coverage as part of their benefits package. Offering coverage for your crew may give them some assurance that if anything happens to them while they are at sea, their loved ones will be more able to cope financially back home. Typically, the coverage amount is fixed in increments of $10,000, up to $100,000.

Accidental Death and Dismemberment

Accidental death and dismemberment, also known as AD&D, is very similar to life insurance. The difference is that there is only a benefit from an accidental death, or significant dismembering injury. This type of insurance typically provides coverage 24/7, not just while at work.

Personal Accident

Personal accident is a crucial insurance policy for your crew members. Often times referred to as PA cover, personal accident insurance will pay out a sum of money for permanent injury (and sometimes permanent illness). It is often confused with medical insurance, however it doesn’t provide coverage for any medical bills or doctors’ appointments, it simply provides a one-time payment after experiencing a permanent injury.

Disability Insurance

Disability insurance is a great way to offer coverage for your crew in the event they get hurt and can’t work for a short period of time. Having this policy will cover a percentage of the person’s wages if they are unable to perform their occupation and can last for up to two years due to an injury or illness. If the disabling event becomes permanent, the personal accident (if purchased as above) may kick-in and pay a lump sum. 

Hospital Indemnity

Hospital indemnity insurance at first glance would make you think that it covers hospital visits, however that is not the case. Think of this type of insurance as a poor man’s disability insurance. Depending on the policy, it provides a benefit each day your crew member is in the hospital. For example, if someone was hurt on the job and had to go to the hospital, the insurance would pay that person $100 per day that they are admitted in the hospital. This doesn’t cover their hospital bills, it just provides the person with an added benefit.

Features That Are Not Features

While the above list is not exhaustive of every option and feature, one thing to note is that some insurance providers tout features that do not hold true. For example, there is no such thing as a Maritime Labour Convention (MLC) compliant yacht crew insurance. It sounds good, but it means nothing. Another thing to be wary of is a plan that says ‘unlimited coverage’. Almost always with international policies, there are restrictions and limitations on the benefits such that the ‘unlimited’ part is actually quite ‘limited’.

Having proper insurance is important whether you are at sea, or docked at a shipyard. MHG is your specialized broker when it comes to crew insurance. Our insurance specialists have the knowledge and experience to find the policy that works best for you. If you are interested in purchasing, or have any questions about yacht crew insurance or travel insurance, please contact us at +1 954 828 1819 or +44 (0) 1624 678668 or visit us online atmhginsurance.com. For more information on preparing to work on a yacht, read our previous blog, “Yacht Crew Insurance Terms 101”.

Having your yacht crew covered with proper insurance goes more in depth than having just one kind of insurance, or trying to pick the best price between two policies. There are several different policies that you should consider if you are the decision maker.

Closeup side view of black luxury yacht agains blue sky in sunlight with copy spaceIf you are not working in the insurance industry, there is a good chance that insurance lingo can provide you with some head scratchers. Words and terms that we don’t use in everyday life can leave people feeling confused. So, we thought it would be helpful to put together a list of terms that we find ourselves explaining frequently. Hopefully this list will give you a better understanding of healthcare in general and be able to assist you when purchasing your future plans from the healthcare marketplace.

· Annual Maximum and/or Policy Maximum - The maximum amount that an insurance policy will pay for covered medical expenses. The amount can be different depending on the policy chosen.

· Coinsurance - The percentage of covered medical costs that you pay after you have met your deductible.

· Copayment or Copay - A fixed dollar amount that you pay directly to your doctor or physician, hospital, or other medical provider (doctor visit or CT scan) at the time of service.

· Cost-Sharing - Determines how much you will pay and how much your insurance plan will cover. Various parts include deductible, copay, and coinsurance.

· Deductible - The amount that you will have to pay out of pocket each year before your insurance plan begins to pay. Some benefits are not subject to the deductible.

· Emergency Evacuation – Transport of the insured person in the event of a life or limb threatening injury or illness which requires treatment at a different location.

· In-Network - Providers that are members of the approved network for your plan.

· Out-of-Network – Any provider that is not a member of the approved network for your plan.

· Out of Pocket Maximum - The maximum you pay during a policy year before your health insurance plan starts to pay 100% for all covered benefits.

· Pre-certification - Contacting your insurance provider for approval before having specific procedures. This process, as well as which procedures require it, can be different depending on your policy.

· Pre-existing Health Condition - An illness, injury, or condition, you had before joining a health insurance plan. All ACA compliant plans cover pre-existing conditions without a waiting period.

· Preferred Provider Organization (PPO) - A plan that allows you to go to any provider that you choose, however insurance pays less for providers that are not in your network.

· Provider - A person or company that provides health care service to you such as a doctor, hospital, urgent care, minute clinic, lab, pharmacy, etc.

· Provider Network - A group of providers with specific agreements to honor a particular health insurance plan or plans.

· Repatriation - A person returning to their home country or place of citizenship.

If you have any more questions about yacht crew insurance terms, please feel free to ask us or comment below! Having proper insurance is important whether you are at sea or docked at a shipyard. MHG is your specialized broker when it comes to crew insurance. Our insurance specialists have the knowledge and experience to find the policy that works best for you. If you are interested in purchasing, or have any questions about yacht crew insurance or travel insurance, please contact us at +1 954 828 1819 or +44 (0) 1624 678668 or visit us online at mhginsurance.com. For more information on why service is so important, read our previous blog, “Yacht Crew Case Study: Customer Service Can Be Life Saving”.

If you are not working in the insurance industry, there is a good chance that insurance lingo can provide you with some head scratchers. So, we thought it would be helpful to put together a list of terms that we find ourselves explaining frequently.

sunset and sea behind, MichiganThe beginning of a new era is here, the start of another decade. Which each era comes change, advancement, and a new way of approaching and thinking about issues. That’s the case in every industry, including the marine industry. Over the next decade, there will be new trends in the marine industry that mirror the rest of society, but also that are unique to the marine industry. After some careful thoughts, here are some of the trends that we can expect, in addition to changes that are needed.

Mental Health

One of the biggest topics of conversation over recent years is mental health, and the importance of proper treatment and coverage. Mental Health is also a hot topic in the marine industry, after recent surveys have discovered the amount of crew members that struggle with mental health issues. Something that needs to change in the next decade, sooner than later, is the addressing of mental health in the marine industry. Crew members are often left in isolation, or live in close quarters while working long hours, and are constantly in high stress situations. Some organizations have already begun to step in and offer a helping hand. The International Seafarers’ Welfare and Assistance Network (ISWAN) have already developed SeafarerHelp, a free, confidential, multilingual helpline for seafarers and their families available 24 hours a day, 365 days per year.

Equal Representation

The next decade is going to result in more women being properly represented across all industries. Women have always been key members of the marine industry, but proper advancement hasn’t been the same for everyone. Another trend that is likely over the next decade is having more women in high- level positions such as Captains and Chief Officers. In the US, data is indicating that women have now surpassed men as a total percentage of the workforce, but when it comes to holding high level positions, there is plenty of room for growth for women.

Technology

No one believed that we would have the whole world in our pocket 20 years ago, and today we have that and then some. Technology is making advancements all around us, so why expect in different in the marine industry? Ships that run on Liquid Natural Gas have already begun production, so one would expect that would eventually make its way to yachting too. A fuel that burns more efficiently and is better for the environment? Where do we sign-up?

There will be other trends to come revolving around technology to come that will require crew members to have specialized training in order to keep their positions, or possibly even new positions that don’t even exist just yet.

Environmental Efforts

Climate change has been a constant topic over the past decade, and it will only be even more of a topic over the next decade as we begin to experience some potential issues. As sea levels rise, changes will need to be made across the world when it comes to shipyards and docks. Coral bleaching is another issue that may affect the industry as top destinations begin to lose their allure.

One can expect the environmental efforts to go to another level to save the one thing that we all have in common no matter what sector of the marine industry to find yourself in, the oceans!

Having proper insurance is important in every aspect of life. Whether you are at sea needing international coverage, looking for proper life insurance coverage, going on a vacation, etc. MHG is your specialized broker. Our insurance specialists have the knowledge and experience to find the policy that works best for you. If you are interested in purchasing, or have any questions about marine crew insurance, travel insurance, U.S. life and health, expatriate insurance, or property and casualty, please contact us at +1 954 828 1819 or +44 (0) 1624 678668 or visit us online at mhginsurance.com.

After some careful thoughts, here are some of the trends that we can expect in the marine industry over the next decade, in addition to changes that are needed.

2020 is the Year of Vision

Woman selecting eyeglasses in optical storeDo you have 2020 vision? Well technically, this year, everyone has 2020 vision. See what I did there? Ok, no more vision puns. If you don’t offer a vision insurance benefit to your employees, you are missing out on a great opportunity to save your staff money, improve their eye health, and potentially make their overall quality of life better. In return you can get a more loyal, healthier, and productive workforce. Since this year is 2020, it makes it a perfect time for you to open your eyes to the new possibilities you can have with your benefits. That was the last one I promise.

The Basics

Your eyes are two of your most important organs, which is why they need special coverage to promote their health. Vision insurance helps to ensure and motivate people to take care of themselves, the same way health insurance encourages overall health.

There are different plan options with different coverages, so it is important to do your research when deciding what plan is right for you. Do you want your plan to only cover eye exams, contacts, and glasses, or do you want something more comprehensive to also include eye surgery or treatment for certain diseases or issues like glaucoma or retinal detachment?

What You Need to Know

Most vision insurance policies simplify their operation by offering flat rate reimbursements; rather than having to pay a deductible, then pay a percentage until reaching an out of pocket maximum, etc.

It is also important to know that all plans are different, and some may provide coverage for 2 glasses in a year and some may provide coverage for either one pair of glasses or contacts for the year, again do your research.

Don’t Stop at Vision

While implementing vision insurance is a great way to help attract, motivate, and retain employees, there are plenty of other benefits you should investigate offering your workforce in order to have a complete and competitive benefits package. Benefits such as Dental, Short- and Long-Term Disability, Group Life Insurance, and Gap Insurance are common additions to a Group Health Insurance Plan, and often have minimal costs in comparisons to the coverage they can provide. After all, a happy and healthy workforce is the key to any successful business!

MHG Insurance Brokers comprises of a team of experts who specialize in group insurance. We have unique relationships with carriers and are sometimes the first to know the plans they offer. We have a 5-star Google review rating, and an outstanding 96% client retention rate in the Life and Health Division (Employee Benefits). Our team of experts can complete a full analysis of your current plan’s offerings, and if needed, recommend a package that will enrich your benefits while keeping cost at a minimum. If you do not have a group plan in place, we have you covered! Our team can provide a proposal for your group which may be less than you anticipate. If you are interested in purchasing health insurance, feel free to contact us at 954-548-3599 or visit our website at mhginsurance.com.

If you don’t offer a vision insurance benefit to your employees, you are missing out on a great opportunity to save your staff money, improve their eye health, and potentially make their overall quality of life better.

Cropped shot of a senior doctor giving his male patient a thorough checkup during his consultationHave you ever heard the saying, “You can learn the easy way, or the hard way!” Many say the best way to learn is through experiencing something that will have an impact on you, whether you personally experienced it, or someone close to you did. The important part is that whatever the impact was, it will motivate you to make the right decision. It could have been something bad that made you never want to go through that again, or something good that made you want to have the same result. The following is a case study of two different scenarios of clients who are experiencing the same issue. Both scenarios are handled in different ways, resulting in different outcomes.

Scenario A

A client who takes a proactive approach to their health went in for their regularly scheduled ENG 1. During the screening portion of the physical, the doctor discovered a potentially harmful bacteria. Due to this client’s proactive nature of maintaining their health, the bacteria was caught before it had done any damage and they were able to have successful treatment with antibiotics.

Scenario B

A client who doesn’t like to go to the doctor decided to skip their regularly scheduled ENG 1 because the yacht they were on did not have it as a requirement. Several weeks later, they began experiencing stomach pains, nausea, and vomiting. They didn’t think much of the symptoms they were experiencing, attributing it to a stomach bug. A couple weeks went by and the symptoms continued to get worse. At this point, the client decided it was time to go to the hospital, where doctors discovered a developing stomach ulcer, caused by Helicobacter pylori.

The Diagnosis

Both clients had the same issue, an infection of Helicobacter pylori. Helicobacter pylori is a bacteria that can cause stomach ulcers as well as stomach cancer. Much like Herpes, it is present in many people, 85% of people to be exact, and can go an entire lifetime without causing any issues. Our client from Scenario A was able to notice the infection early enough and have it treated before any symptoms presented themselves. Our client form Scenario B had a different fate that may have been avoided if they had their regular physical exam.

The Cure

Going to the doctor can be a hassle, especially for a yacht crew member who may rarely be onshore to do so. However, getting your check-up is important to decide your overall health, as well as to detect any issues early enough so that something can be done proactively. Get a routine physical each year, even if your yacht doesn’t require you to do so. Otherwise it may be too late by the time you find out you are having an issue, even if you don’t have any symptoms. Having good medical insurance is crucial too because if any issues do arise, you may need costly medical treatment.

For more information on some of the dangers you can experience while docked, read our previous blog, “The Dangers of Being Docked at a Shipyard.” MHG is your specialized broker when it comes to crew insurance. Our insurance specialists have the knowledge and experience to find the policy that works best for you. If you are interested in purchasing, or have any questions about yacht crew insurance or travel insurance, please contact us at +1 954 828 1819 or +44 (0) 1624 678668 or visit us online at mhginsurance.com.

The following is a case study of two different scenarios of clients who are experiencing the same issue. Both scenarios are handled in different ways, resulting in different outcomes.

Buying Insurance 101

Young couple shaking hands with a female agentBuying insurance, no matter what type, can be an intimidating and daunting task. For one, there is a ton of tricky lingo, a plethora of different coverages amounts and types, and of course the cost. Unless you are someone who works in the insurance industry, chances are insurance lingo can sometimes sound like a different language, and confusing protocol leaving you wondering what to do next.

However, it doesn’t have to be this way! Follow these 5 easy steps when making any insurance purchasing decision to help ease your mind and make the process as smooth and simple as possible.

What am I trying to protect?

When buying insurance, the first thing you need to ask yourself is “What am I trying to protect?” Are you trying to protect your business? Your health? Your kids? Your assets?

Once you have the answer to that question it will narrow down what you should be looking for. For insurance, If you wanted to protect your business, you would want to consider a General Liability policy, or Marine General Liability depending on the business. Protecting your kids? Look into life insurance.

What is my budget?

Once you know what type of insurance product you are in the market for, next you need to figure out your budget. After all, you don’t want to lapse your policy because you can’t afford it down the line if things become tight down the road, so be smart. Depending on your situation and what you are trying to insure, sit down and figure out what you can realistically afford, and what level of priority is the type of insurance you need.

Who do I know?

One thing that can make the decision easier is to figure out if you know anyone that currently has what are looking to get. If you do, ask them about it. What are the pros and cons? Is there anything they would do differently? Is there anything you need to look out for?

What don’t I know?

As with anything you buy, you should always do your own research. Figure out what products are out there, what pitfalls there are, and anything else that will help you get the best out of what you are buying.

Seek out a reputable broker!

Insurance Brokers often get a bad reputation but using a broker can help you avoid situations like this. For one, the majority of brokers are well-versed with the ins and outs of the insurance industry and can help you avoid a negative trend that you may otherwise know nothing about. Not to mention, brokers work for you! Brokers typically operate at no extra cost to you as it would be if you went straight to the insurance company to get your plan. If you would like to learn more details of using an insurance broker, read our previous blog, “Why You Should Use an Insurance Broker”.

Having proper insurance is important whether you are looking to protect your business, your loved ones, or yourself! Our insurance specialists have the knowledge and experience to find the type of insurance you are in search of, and policy that works best for you and your budget. If you are interested in purchasing, or have any questions about marine crew insurance, life & health insurance, travel insurance, expatriate insurance, property & casualty insurance, or ocean marine insurance, please contact us at +1 954 828 1819 or +44 (0) 1624 678668 or visit us online at mhginsurance.com.

Follow these 5 easy steps when making any insurance purchasing decision to help ease your mind and make the process as smooth and simple as possible.

Shot of a couple looking stressed out while working on their finances at homeThe promise of an amazing benefit is great, but what happens when you try to use that benefit and experience resistance? That seems to be happening more and more when it comes to low-cost insurance plans. When buying insurance, a person is buying an intangible promise. With that mindset, one can see why low-cost insurance is rarely ever low-cost.

Can’t Have Good, Quick, and Cheap

Ever hear the saying you can’t have your cake and eat it to? Typically, with anything in life, you get what you pay for. Consumers are constantly trying to save money any way they can on products or services they buy. However, depending on the product or service, a good “deal” can quickly turn into an absolute nightmare. Low-cost insurance plans are no different. Consumers can expect to receive delayed quotes, slow service, claims issues, and that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

You’ll Pay for It Later

Saving money on premium doesn’t always mean that you’re saving money overall! Many times, those who opt for cheaper insurance end up paying more in the long run because of a lack of coverage that was unknown to them when trying to use their insurance, or even worse, no coverage at all. Imagine being involved in an emergency situation that ends up with you being in the hospital, the last thing you want to be worrying about in that moment is being stuck with the entire hospital bill which could end up being tens of thousands of dollars.

Possibility of No Service

One trend that has popped up as of late are insurance companies offering cheap plans to grow their business. However, businesses can’t afford to continue to operate on low margins, so the customers are the ones who end up suffering. Having a plan with great benefits, but no service when actually trying to use it results in disappointment for the consumer.

Consumers vs. Insurance Companies

Insurance companies are usually very large, so going toe to toe with one is no easy task if you have a dispute with the plan that you have purchased. Even if the consumer is completely in the right about a particular claim or situation, the costs and time involved can be substantial. It is for this reason that you really need to do your research and choose the best plan for your needs, not just the cheapest.

Use a Broker!

Insurance Brokers often get a bad reputation but using a broker can help you avoid situations like this. For one, the majority of brokers are well-versed with the ins and outs of the insurance industry and can help you avoid a negative trend that you may otherwise know nothing about. Not to mention, brokers work for you! Brokers typically operate at no extra cost to you as it would be if you went straight to the insurance company to get your plan. If you would like to learn more details of using an insurance broker, read our previous blog, “Why You Should Use an Insurance Broker”.

Having proper insurance is important in every aspect of life. Whether you are at sea needing international coverage, looking for proper life insurance coverage, going on a vacation, etc. MHG is your specialized broker. Our insurance specialists have the knowledge and experience to find the policy that works best for you. If you are interested in purchasing, or have any questions about marine crew insurance, travel insurance, U.S. life and health, expatriate insurance, or property and casualty, please contact us at +1 954 828 1819 or +44 (0) 1624 678668 or visit us online at mhginsurance.com.

When buying insurance, a person is buying an intangible promise. With that mindset, one can see why low-cost insurance is rarely ever low-cost.

Ring life buoy on boat. Obligatory ship equipment. Orange lifesaver on the deck of a cruise ship.Falls don't "just happen," and people don't fall only because they get older. While many falls can be linked to a person's physical condition or a medical problem, other causes could be safety hazards onboard or in your environment. That being said, it’s important to take the necessary steps and precautions to avoid accidents while onboard, or wherever you are for that matter!

Some Risk Factors and Pointers:

Scientists have linked a number of personal risk factors to falling. Here’s just a few:

  • Muscle weakness, especially in the legs. People with weak muscles are more likely to fall than are those who maintain their muscle strength, as well as their flexibility and endurance.
    Are you on your feet all day? Sure you are. Be aware of muscle weakness in your legs. Stretch often and stay fit.
  • Blood pressure that drops when you get up from lying down or sitting. This condition -- called postural hypotension -- might result from dehydration, or certain medications.
    Drink plenty of water and stay away from too much caffeine or alcohol to help prevent a fall.
  • Wearing unsafe footwear. Backless shoes and slippers, high-heeled shoes, and shoes with smooth leather soles are examples of unsafe footwear.
    Sound similar to the shoes you wear? Your feet have to last your entire life. Take care of them and they’ll take care of you.
  • Sensory problems. If your senses don't work well, you will be less aware of your environment.
    Do I need to say more about this? Don’t do things that impair your senses.
  • Not seeing well. It takes a while for your eyes to adjust to see clearly when you move between darkness and light.
    Certainly something you experience frequently onboard, and sunglasses are a requirement. Although falls can happen anywhere, well over half of all falls happen at home (onboard). Falls often happen while a person is doing normal daily activities. Some of these falls are caused by factors in the person's living environment. For instance, a slick floor or a poorly lit narrow stairway may lead to a fall. But I’m sure you never have those conditions onboard, do you?
Having proper insurance is important whether you are at sea or docked at a shipyard. MHG is your specialized broker when it comes to crew insurance. Our insurance specialists have the knowledge and experience to find the policy that works best for you. If you are interested in purchasing, or have any questions about yacht crew insurance or travel insurance, please contact us at +1 954 828 1819 or +44 (0) 1624 678668 or visit us online at mhginsurance.com

It’s important to take the necessary steps and precautions to avoid accidents while onboard, or wherever you are for that matter! Read more.

Serious confused young couple checking bills, bank, loan documents with using laptop, large credit card bills, reading bad news, having debt financial problem conceptAs a busy crew member on a yacht, one of the most disturbing things to greet you upon returning from a long rotation is a medical bill demanding you owe thousands of dollars. Navigating the medical systems in the U.S. can not only be one of the most daunting endeavors, but also one of the most complicated. Which is right where we are waiting to step in!

Let the Experts Handle It

Frequently, we are contacted by crew members who have a bill in excess of $10,000 and are panicking because the letter is very threatening. Many times, they don’t even know where to begin to fix it. That is where we will step in and handle it for you wherever and whenever possible. Never pay a medical bill without contacting us to let us research it for you. It can often be as simple as a claim form needed to be completed. If you sought care inside the U.S, you will most likely receive multiple bills from a hospital visit, leaving you completely overwhelmed. It is not uncommon for this to happen in the U.S. and again, crew are ill-equipped and inexperienced to handle it.

Do Your Homework, and Keep Records

Utilizing your insurance to the best of your ability is our goal. Claim issues can often be avoided by just understanding your policy or taking the time and due diligence to pre-certify. We are available to review the policy with you and answer any questions you may have. It is also imperative one keeps copies of all the bills, receipts, charges, invoices, etc. from any doctor facility visits. In the event there is an unpaid claim, or it appears you owe a balance you already paid, you are able to validate.

It Happens More Than You Think

A recent case of a U.S. medical claim gone awry is with a shoulder surgery that a crew member had well over a year ago. They pre-certified as required, chose a network facility to minimize any out-of-pocket costs, and believed that the bills were all paid. Fifteen months later, they received bills from collection agencies threatening them. They reached out to us for assistance and luckily, we were able to find that the facility as well as the doctor had been paid and they never recorded it properly. We contacted the insurance carrier on behalf of the crew member, obtained copies of the payments, and dealt with the collection agencies. Once we provided them the proof they had been paid-in-full, the crew member was no longer under any legal responsibility for the bills.

As your insurance administrator, we are here to help you understand not only your benefits, but also to be the fixer when possible. We can work with the providers, the insurance carrier, as well as collection agencies, if it has gotten to that point, to avoid yourself from having to spend valuable free time on the phone trying to get a solution. At MHG, our commitment to service sets us apart from our competitors. We not only sell the policy; we never leave your side after the fact.  And if you happen to need medical assistance, we want you to know, you are not alone in this. Just reach out and let us help. If you are currently experiencing any issues with your Crew Insurance, have questions about your policy, are looking for a new policy please contact us at +1 954 828 1819 or +44 (0) 1624 678668 or visit us at mhginsurance.com.

Navigating the medical systems in the U.S. can not only be one of the most daunting endeavors, but also one of the most complicated. Which is right where we are waiting to step in!

Doctor talking to the patient about menopause and treatment in future.When it comes to international yacht crew insurance, being as open and forthcoming as possible, both before and during the time you are insured, can be critical to having a successful insurance experience. When you ask people about their medical status, the most common response is “I’m fine”. Unfortunately, many people often... shall we say... “overstate” how healthy they are.  Normally, this will not bode well once a claim against insurance is made.

Let’s review the 5 most common pitfalls:

1. Non-disclosure of a past medical condition

Not only can this be a dangerous situation for you and your fellow crew, but it also sets up a scenario where in a worst case, your insurance could be cancelled. Insurance enrollment forms are a contract, and misrepresentation or incomplete information can render your insurance policy void. It’s important, no matter how minor it may seem, to disclose your entire medical history (and keep a file).

2. Non-disclosure of an ongoing medical condition

Accurately representing your health to the insurance company (and even your insurance broker) is really important. Many people don’t realize that taking a regular prescription drug is significant in the eyes of the insurer.  When the claims start coming in for the cost of those medications, the insurer is most certainly going to start asking questions and that’s likely to take you down the path of having your claims denied. With all of the necessary information, we can provide you with personalized support that works for you.

3. Overstating the recovery of a previous illness or injury

It’s important to be careful about saying, “I’m fine” after recovery from an illness or injury. This is particularly important with back, shoulder and neck injuries.  With the work that you do, we often see crew returning to work before they really should and that doesn’t always give the body time to fully recover. Not being in pain, may not mean you are fully recovered.

4. Non-disclosure of all the facts at the time of claim

If you have an injury or illness and you need to make a claim, it is important to fill out the claim form completely with as much detail as possible surrounding the circumstances.  This may include an incident report, or possibly a police report(!) along with your own personal narrative, which can be valuable.  Withholding information usually will simply result in your claim being delayed or otherwise declined.

5. Waiting until you have insurance to see a doctor     

This is the most critical item of all the pitfalls, when it comes to your wellbeing.  Do not delay seeking medical attention until you have health insurance. Not only are you putting your health at risk, but once you do see the doctor, the insurance company may not pay your claim because you had the condition prior to purchasing insurance. This is a standard clause in most international insurance plans, the language says something to the effect that treatment should have been sought previously by a prudent person. So please be prudent! The key to a successful insurance experience starts from the very beginning and goes all the way until you are no longer in need of health insurance.

The experienced Insurance Specialists at MHG Insurance Brokers are ready to help you with all the details of what coverage every crew member should have, and which carrier is best for your particular situation. MHG Insurance Brokers offers a wide range of yacht crew insurance plans and international medical insurance for expatriates, with customizable coverage for all nationalities and itineraries. 

When you ask people about their medical status, the most common response is “I’m fine”. Unfortunately, many people often... shall we say... “overstate” how healthy they are. The same applies to yacht crew. Read more.