Small Craft Harbours (SCH) of Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) purchases Third Party Liability Insurance (TPLI) for all Harbour Authorities (HAs). The insurance provides protection to the HA if a claim is made against it for accidental loss of life, bodily injury, and/or property damage suffered by third parties.

The insurance policy is renewed annually in April. The SCH Program is responsible for the renewal and administration of this policy.

Who is insured?


HAs (against claims from a third party).

What is insured?


The insurance policy will cover losses if a claim is made against the HA for accidental loss of life, bodily injury, and/or property damage suffered by third parties that result directly from negligent acts of the (HA), such as:

  • A person trips and falls over a piece of wood and injures himself. The insurer will investigate the claim and, if warranted, pay for the pain and suffering and any legal defence, should it become necessary.
  • A collision between two boats as a result of wrong directions given by the HA or their employees. The insurer will investigate the claim and, if it is determined that the HA or their employee was at fault, the insurer would pay for the repairs of the boats and any other damages that they are legally required to pay.
What is not insured?


Any loss or damage to property owned, leased or occupied by the HA. If a fire burns down a building that is owned by the (HA), the insurance policy will not respond. However, the insurance company will investigate claims against the HA as a result of the fire causing damages to someone else's property or causing injuries to a Third Party.

Injuries sustained by members of the Board of Directors, members, employees and volunteers. The Harbour Authority Corporation (a federally incorporated body working on behalf of all HAs) separately offers to its members "Directors and Officers" insurance as well as "Accidental Death and Dismemberment and Bodily Injury" insurance.

Contractors on harbour property causing damage to others. Contractors must carry their own liability and property insurance.

Vehicles owned by the HA and used on HA business. Vehicles must be insured under automobile insurance policies.

The TPLI policy will provide the following services:


Insurance coverage up to $20,000,000 per accident/occurrence with a deductible of $1,500 per incident.

Note: The portion of the deductible paid by HAs is $500. The SCH Program covers the portion of the deductible in excess of $500.

The insurer will investigate all incidents for which they receive reports.

The insurer will pay for legal representation should the HA or their employees be sued.

The insurer will pay for claims by a third party (bodily injury, property damage) where the investigation determines that payment is warranted.

What to do in case of an incident


When the (HA), their officers, employees and/or volunteers become aware of an incident, the following steps should be taken:

  • Contact law enforcement or emergency services, if required
  • Provide assistance and first aid
  • Record key information, including:
    • Date and time
    • Name and contact information of the person(s) involved or injured
    • Location where incident occured
    • Weather conditions at time of incident
    • Witness names and contact information
    • Photographs, if possible
  • Arrange for emergency repairs to minimize any damage
  • Immediately report the incident to your regional SCH contact

Small Craft Harbours Regional Offices

For additional information on TPLI, please refer to the "Questions & Answers" booklet.

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