Published on November 9th, 2018 | by Sunit Nandi


Do You Really Need Drone Insurance?

Drones, also known as unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) or unmanned aerial systems (UAS), have quickly become game changers in photography and videography. These days, drones are not just toys for the big boys, they are used for more serious stuff like law enforcement and disaster relief. Here are some agencies using drones:

  • Microsoft
  • NASA
  • BBC
  • Amazon Prime Air
  • UPS
  • FEMA

And in case you don’t know it yet, there is insurance for drones, just as there is insurance for cars. Drones are machines that can fail or malfunction and can cause property damage, privacy violations, and bodily injury.

If you fly a drone for commercial use such as real estate marketing, infrastructure inspection, or media coverage, you definitely need to get your drone insured. Your clients will be asking for your equipment’s liability and hull insurance.

So, yes, you need drone insurance to stay protected.

What does drone insurance cover?

Accidents don’t happen solely because of mishandling; it can also result from other factors such as system failure, loss of signal, and even hacking. Having a drone coverage may save your business from any lawsuit that may cause you a fortune.

A commercial drone insurance policy can protect your business against:

  • Damage to the drone
  • Damage to property caused by the drone
  • Loss of data
  • Medical expenses
  • Personal injury (privacy violation)
  • General liability

The scope of coverage offered by your insurance provider depends on how you plan to use the drone for your business.

If your drone is for personal use only, check with your insurance agent to ask what coverage will be provided under your homeowner’s policy. A homeowner’s policy could protect you against the following:

  • Damage to the drone
  • Damage to property caused by the drone
  • Bodily injury to others
  • Personal injury (privacy violation)
  • Personal liability

Remember, a drone must be registered with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) if it weighs more than 0.55 lbs. to avoid criminal penalties and fines.

Do you need insurance for your drone if it’s only for recreational purpose?

A drone is still a drone, and the damage it may cause is the same no matter how you use it. Whether it’s for business, recreation, or other uses. What if it just stops flight mid-air and crashes on your neighbor’s window and injured a family member? That could turn nasty if your toy is not covered.

So, the answer to this question is yes. You need to have your drone insured even when you only use it for fun. There will always be a possibility of having an accident. There will always be electric lines or private property to invade. Better safe than sorry.

Will your flying club insurance suffice?

If you are a member of any flying club, that’s great! They have insurance coverage that may be a good option. However, just like any other policy, you have to look at the details.

Many people assume that once there’s insurance, anything goes and everything is covered. Flying club’s insurance doesn’t include commercial usage, and if you use your drone for taking footages for an event to be put on a website, taking publicity photos, or helping a friend take aerial view pictures of land he’s selling, that’s using your drone commercially according to FAA definition.

Make sure to go through the details of your coverage so that you know what to expect or what are your limitations when flying your drone.

Because many drone prices are now less than $100, the number of drone flyers have soared. Most of these flyers don’t know squat about the rules and regulations in flying these little aerial monsters. It’s projected that millions of drones will be flying the skies in the next few years, so there should be some law and order in place. Have your drones registered and then insured so that you won’t regret buying that unmanned aerial vehicle. If you’re flying a drone within 5 miles of an airport and you don’t have permission from FAA, you’re breaking the law and you can be fined $10,000.

Before you unbox your new toy and get too excited to fly it, research first. Be aware of the consequences and be prepared for whatever trouble it can bring. We can never be too careful with anything, especially those that fly – it is something that we don’t have total control over. Get your drones insured so you can fully enjoy its cool functions and features.

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I'm the leader of Techno FAQ. Also an engineering college student with immense interest in science and technology. Other interests include literature, coin collecting, gardening and photography. Always wish to live life like there's no tomorrow.

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