You roll up to an FBO in a multi-million-dollar business jet, and they roll out the red carpet. Your passengers disembark and you stroll into the office. There, the smiling customer service representative hands you a document. “It’s just our standard hold-harmless agreement,” she says. “We need your signature.”
The International Business Aviation Council (IBAC) has finished a two-year project to develop International Standards for Business Aircraft Operations (IS-BAO), but release of the document is pending IBAC’s obtaining liability insurance. Development of the standards started in March 2000 and culminated shortly before the NBAA Convention last month, when the IS-BAO board signed off on the document.
Someone I used to know–a father and general aviation pilot–questioned why he needed life insurance, because, quote, “I won’t be around to enjoy it.” He could well afford it, but apparently his survivors’ welfare didn’t warrant the few bucks a month a policy would cost.
So called “showstoppers” insurance, a form of business interruption coverage, will likely help NBAA recover some of the expenses and lost revenue the association incurred when it postponed last year’s annual convention from September and moved it to December. The NBAA Convention has always been covered under showstoppers insurance, but this is the first time the association is making a claim.
With regard to liability insurance, answers to the question of “How much is enough?” have always been something of a mystery. But for shareholders in a fractional program, the answers are compounded by the concept of shared ownership.
Eclipse Aviation will partner with Global Aerospace to provide aircraft hull and liability insurance to owners of Eclipse 500s. “While it is too early to set premiums, Global expects insurance premiums for the new Eclipse 500 will be similar to those for existing aircraft,” said Eclipse officials.
Aviation insurance rates can be affected by the vagaries of the stock and investment markets, insurance claims unrelated to the aviation industry and historic peaks and valleys in policy pricing. And further cost pressures are added because the number of aviation insurers continues to decrease.
Following last September 11, aircraft owners and operators began bracing for massive hikes in insurance coverage and changes in the limits of that coverage. Now, a year later, their fears are being realized. But while rates have risen, sometimes triple those before September 11, the increases are not without some justification. The question is, just how much is justified?
Eclipse Aviation announced that it will partner with underwriter Global Aerospace Underwriters to provide hull and liability insurance to owners of owner-flown Eclipse 500s.
If aviation insurance news has been mostly bad since September 11, there is still one small bright spot in the industry. Life insurance premiums for corporate pilots have either remained stagnant or actually decreased since last September. And aviation operators have an increasing variety of choices for providing life insurance for their employees.