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There are over 1.1 million recreation drones are registered in the United States. It doesn’t take much imagination to picture all of the insurance claims that one could wind up making from all the drones overhead.

While most people undoubtedly fly drones without any issues, some homeowners have filed claims for drones crashing into roofs or cars. For example, a tourist crashed their drone into a Rome monument and the Leaning Tower of Pisa. Additionally, three college professors in Boulder, Colorado, saw their drone crash into a field — starting a fire and igniting 52 acres. 

So, yes, drone accidents can happen. But the good thing is that most drone accidents are covered by homeowners insurance. 

Does homeowners insurance cover drones?

The good news if you own a drone: Most standard homeowners insurance policies exclude liability coverage for aircraft but will include coverage for “model or hobby aircraft,” like your personal drone. If your policy does offer this coverage, and if you crash your drone and cause bodily injury or property damage, it should be covered by the terms and limits of your policy.

If you crash your drone, it also should be covered under the personal property portions of your homeowners’ coverage. However, the deductible for your property coverage may be more than you paid for your drone.

What types of drones are covered by homeowners insurance?

Commercial or business use of your drone is not normally covered under a homeowners policy

If you end up buying a more expensive drone, you should ask your insurer if there is a rider you could buy to make sure it is fully covered if damaged. 

Additionally, if you end up flying your drone outside, you now need to register it with the FAA before you operate it outdoors. The cost is only $5, but you will have to renew your registration every five years.

Find out more on FAA drone registration rules and drone insurance.

Which component of a homeowners insurance policy provides coverage for drones?

If you are covered against drone accidents, you’ll find the details of your coverage in the liability portion of your homeowners insurance policy. It would likely cover you against lawsuits for any property damage or injuries that your drone causes. If a litigious-happy neighbor feels your drone has caused them privacy issues and they sue, you may also be protected.

If your drone is over 55 pounds, you need to register it with the Federal Aviation Administration. If you don’t, and you cause damage with your drone, you could be arrested and it’s likely that your insurance won’t cover you. Insurers tend to cover homeowners when they do everything right, but they don’t cover negligence.

What types of damages caused by drones are covered?

Any damage or injuries that were intentional will not be covered.

However, you’re generally covered for any damage as long as it was an accident and homeowners insurance will pay for hospital bills or property damage. Alongside the repairs, homeowners insurance may cover the cost of replacing the drone. If you are sued for distress, homeowners insurance will likely also cover legal fees.

Keep in mind that we’re talking about drones used for recreation. If you have a drone you use for your business – maybe you’re a real estate agent taking photos of homes with your drone – and there’s an accident, your homeowners insurance probably won’t cover the damage. However, your business insurance should.

How to file a claim for drone damage

Filing a claim for a drone is similar to filing any other insurance claim. If your drone went careening into a park and sent a wedding party diving into a lake, you’ll want to explain everything to your insurer. If you have photos of the drenched bride and groom, you’ll want to send those. If somebody filed a police report, you may need to ultimately give that to your insurer.

Every bit of information that the insurer needs to show that you have a drone that went out of control, you’ll likely have to produce. And then you wait to hear what your insurer says your payout will be.

Drone insurance for hobbyists

Many insurers insure drones, but some companies specialize in drone insurance, and then plenty of conventional insurance companies that handle drone insurance. Here’s a partial list of what’s out there:

  • BWI Fly
  • SkyWatch.AI
  • Thimble
  • Avion Drone Insurance
  • United States Aircraft Insurance Group (USAIG)
  • Global Aerospace
  • Progressive
  • State Farm
  • Liberty Mutual
  • Geico
  • Chubb Insurance

And many more…

As for actually insuring your drone with your insurance, contact your insurer and let them know you have a drone. While you may be covered without due diligence, you’d be wise to alert them to ensure it’s on your policy. They’ll also probably remind you to register your drone. If you don’t have it registered, there’s a good chance that if something goes wrong, you won’t be covered.

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Geoff Williams
Contributing Researcher


Geoff Williams is a freelance journalist and author in Loveland, Ohio. He has been writing about insurance and personal finance since the mid-2000s. His work has appeared in numerous publications, including Life magazine, Ladies’ Home Journal, The Washington Post, CNNMoney, Entrepreneur, and U.S. News & World Report.