How to Insure Your Drone So You Don’t Fly Into Financial Disaster

With prices dropping on new drones, enthusiastic amateur pilots are out in force. While the fun factor is huge, there’s a side of drone ownership that many new pilots don’t realize: They’ll need insurance.

Given the cost of drones — including a camera, they start at several hundred dollars and run well into the thousands — insurance is great to have in case your equipment crashes and burns or is lost or stolen. Even with a deductible of several hundred dollars, insurance can pay off.

But that’s not all. Drone pilots also can be held responsible for compensation if their drone hurts someone or damages property. “With some models tipping the scales at up to 55 pounds, rogue drones can pose a significant threat to people and property,” points out the Insurance Information Institute (I.I.I.), an insurance industry trade organization.

Here’s the good news: If you already have homeowners or renters insurance, your drone may be covered against loss, theft or damage as part of your personal property.

Renters: Your landlord’s insurance will not cover you, so be sure to have an individual renters policy.

“Many home insurance policies cover personal property and, while there’s an exclusion for aircraft, ‘model or hobby aircraft not designed to fly people or cargo’ are included in the policy, according to a typical homeowners policy from New Jersey Manufacturers Insurance Co.,” according to Insure.com.

But don’t take our word for it. Policies vary widely, so assume nothing. Read the fine print in your policy and call your agent or insurer if you have doubts or questions.

What about liability?

There’s one piece of the insurance puzzle that requires extra attention: liability. If your drone veers into someone else’s space, accidentally violating their privacy, or causes an accident in which someone is hurt, you could be sued. Once again, your pre-existing insurance coverage might be of help. According the I.I.I.:

The liability portion of your homeowners or renters policy may cover you against lawsuits for bodily injury or property damage that you or family members cause to other people with a drone. It may also cover privacy issues — for example if your drone inadvertently takes pictures or videotapes a neighbor who then sues you. It will not cover any intentional invasion of privacy.

However, even with liability coverage through a homeowners or renters policy, your payout limits may be too low. You may require additional liability protection.

One way to beef up your coverage is to ask an insurance agent about purchasing a separate liability policy.

Two ways you’re not covered

Your homeowners, renters or even separate liability insurance may be of no help in two cases:

  • The insurance options described above apply only to people using their drones for fun. If you are using a drone to make money, you’ll need a commercial insurance policy. Even picking up a few bucks as a sideline — photographing for websites or real estate agents, for example — will fall under the “commercial” category and require separate commercial insurance.
  • Secondly, liability insurance is meant to cover accidents. If you can be proved to have deliberately caused damage with your drone or to have used it purposefully to spy on someone, your insurer may decline to pay.

Are you tempted to get in on the action with a new drone? Share your thoughts in comments below or on our Facebook page.

Disclosure: The information you read here is always objective. However, we sometimes receive compensation when you click links within our stories.

Read Next
17 Home Upgrades That Rarely Help Close a Sale
17 Home Upgrades That Rarely Help Close a Sale

Real estate agents give these renovations low marks when it comes to helping sell homes.

It’s Worth Paying Extra for These 14 Items
It’s Worth Paying Extra for These 14 Items

Here’s where to find the sweet spot at the intersection of price and quality.

5 Reasons You Should Claim Social Security ASAP
5 Reasons You Should Claim Social Security ASAP

Experts often recommend postponing claiming your Social Security retirement benefits. But there are situations in which you should start taking the money sooner.

6 Investing Tools That Help You Diversify
6 Investing Tools That Help You Diversify

Here’s how you can lend to startup businesses, fund social causes or get in on investments once available only to the very rich.

7 Deadly Health Mistakes People Make After Age 50
7 Deadly Health Mistakes People Make After Age 50

Simply avoiding these actions, or lack thereof, can improve the odds of a longer, more healthful life.

View this page without ads

Help us produce more money-saving articles and videos by subscribing to a membership.

Get Started

Most Popular
7 Kirkland Signature Items to Avoid at Costco
7 Kirkland Signature Items to Avoid at Costco

Even if it seems you save a bundle buying Costco’s Kirkland Signature brand products, they may not be the bargain they appear to be.

8 Tips for Retiring Comfortably on Social Security Alone
8 Tips for Retiring Comfortably on Social Security Alone

It’s never too early to start learning how to live well while living on less.

Am I Eligible for My Mother’s Social Security Benefit?
Am I Eligible for My Mother’s Social Security Benefit?

Can an adult daughter tap into her late mother’s benefit?

The Next 5 Groups Who Will Get the COVID-19 Vaccine
The Next 5 Groups Who Will Get the COVID-19 Vaccine

The CDC has unveiled a schedule that likely will determine who gets the next doses.

11 Generic Products You Should Buy at Costco
11 Generic Products You Should Buy at Costco

Not all generics are worthwhile, but these are among the best from Costco’s Kirkland Signature brand.

9 Things You’ll Never See at Costco Again
9 Things You’ll Never See at Costco Again

The warehouse store offers an enormous selection, but these products aren’t coming back.

3 Ways to Get Microsoft Office for Free
3 Ways to Get Microsoft Office for Free

With a little ingenuity, you can cut Office costs to zero.

This Surprise Factor Can Raise Your Risk of Dementia
This Surprise Factor Can Raise Your Risk of Dementia

Nearly half of U.S. residents may face this threat.

Organize Your Home With These 10 Thrift Store Finds
Organize Your Home With These 10 Thrift Store Finds

Resolve to be clutter-free in 2021 with these secondhand purchases.

This Gas Station Scam Is Victimizing More Drivers
This Gas Station Scam Is Victimizing More Drivers

For the second straight year, a growing number of Americans believe they’ve fallen prey to this scam.

11 Laws You Could Be Breaking Without Knowing It
11 Laws You Could Be Breaking Without Knowing It

Seriously? Fibbing about the weather is a crime? This and other little-known legal traps await the unwary.

These Are the 3 Best Used Cars You Can Buy
These Are the 3 Best Used Cars You Can Buy

These vehicles boast reliability, safety and long-lasting value.

6 Legal Documents Retirees Need — but Don’t Have
6 Legal Documents Retirees Need — but Don’t Have

Few retirees have all of these documents that are crucial to their golden years — especially during a pandemic.

13 Things Seniors Can Get for Free — or Almost Free
13 Things Seniors Can Get for Free — or Almost Free

There are many ways to get cheap or free services and goods after reaching a certain age.

Internet Providers Can’t Charge You for This Anymore
Internet Providers Can’t Charge You for This Anymore

Starting this month, your ISP no longer can bill you for this fee.

Can a Divorced Widow Claim Her First Husband’s Social Security Benefits?
Can a Divorced Widow Claim Her First Husband’s Social Security Benefits?

The rules are complicated when it comes to eligibility for survivors benefits.

9 Small Expenses That Are Bleeding Your Budget Dry
9 Small Expenses That Are Bleeding Your Budget Dry

Keep more of future paychecks by eliminating these budget-busting unnecessary expenses.

15 Painless Ways You Can Cut Costs in 2021
15 Painless Ways You Can Cut Costs in 2021

Follow these tips to save, so you’ll have money for things that really matter.

11 Huge Retirement Costs That Are Often Overlooked
11 Huge Retirement Costs That Are Often Overlooked

Does your retirement budget account for all of these costs?

View More Articles

View this page without ads

Help us produce more money-saving articles and videos by subscribing to a membership.

Get Started

Add a Comment

Our Policy: We welcome relevant and respectful comments in order to foster healthy and informative discussions. All other comments may be removed. Comments with links are automatically held for moderation.