Standard Commercial General Liability Policies will not provide insurance coverage for drone operators. Drone operators will need to ensure they have appropriate coverage for insurable risks in drone operation that result in property damage or third-party liability.
Insurance products get created or are amended to match new risks that emerge in society. For instance, automobile insurance did not exist before there were automobiles. As the use of drones proliferates, one must remember the standard commercial general liability policy, or a regular homeowners’ policy, is highly unlikely to provide coverage in the event of an accident with a drone. The risks associated with drones are starting to become more well-known, including near misses with planes, drones crashing from the sky and injuring either persons or property, or liability cases against either the operator of a drone, or a manufacturer.
The insurance industry is responding and starting to provide new products in the insurance marketplace, including the following:
- Traditional aircraft liability coverage applicable to drone use
- Third-party coverage for damage to property caused by drone operations, including personal injury, and premises liability
- First-party coverage that protects the drone operator with respect to the drone and associated equipment
Sellers, owners, or operators of drones must consider the attendant risks associated with the sale or use of drones, and then ensure that the appropriate insurance coverage is purchased. The failure to do so can place your personal assets at risk in the event of a miscue involving a drone.