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Munich Reinsurance America commercial drone policy takes flight

Posted On: Jul. 5, 2017 2:48 PM CST

Munich Reinsurance America Inc. on Wednesday said it has launched a new commercial drone insurance product for insurers and their small to medium-size customers that are taking advantage of recent federal aviation regulations.

The liability endorsement can be attached to an existing commercial general liability insurance policy purchased through a participating insurer, the Princeton, New Jersey-based reinsurer said in a statement.

The endorsement provides bodily injury and property damage liability or personal injury liability coverage for drones that are under 55 pounds. 

It is designed for small to medium-size businesses and farm and agricultural operations in the U.S. that utilize drones to support other sources of revenue. 

The endorsement can be customized based on insurance carriers’ existing commercial lines policies and their policyholders’ needs. Claims are handled by the insurance carrier, the reinsurer said in the statement.

Munich Re’s drone liability endorsement has limits up to $1 million on all policies meeting the eligibility criteria, a Munich Re spokeswoman said in an email.

On Aug. 29, 2016, the Federal Aviation Administration enacted Part 107, which instituted new rules in terms of operational limitations, necessary certifications and aircraft requirements for commercial unmanned aircraft systems.

“New regulations have spurred the commercial use of drones across a broad spectrum of industries from photography and security to firefighting and law enforcement,” Tim Brockett, senior vice president of reinsurance division strategic products for Munich Re US, said in a statement. “But as companies and public entities find new, safe and cost effective ways to use drone technology, most commercial insurance policies don’t cover or offer very limited liability protection for drones.”