Insurance Free of Particular Average Clause: Unravel Myths

Understanding the Insurance Free of Particular Average Clause | Cover Smart

When it comes to understanding marine insurance, one term that often causes confusion is the Free of Particular Average (FPA) clause. This insurance term is critical for those involved in the shipping and logistics industries. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll break down what FPA means, how it functions in marine insurance policies, and considerations you need to make when determining if this type of coverage is suitable for your business.

What is Free of Particular Average?

The Free of Particular Average clause is a provision commonly found in marine insurance policies. It limits the liability of the insurer by excluding coverage for partial losses or damage to the cargo unless certain events occur. Essentially, when a policy includes the FPA clause, the insurer does not cover losses sustained due to the ordinary course of transit. Instead, compensation is provided only when losses are attributable to specified perils, which are often catastrophic in nature.

Understanding the Clause in Depth

The implementation of the FPA clause can vary based on the policy and the insurer. Here’s a closer look at the specifics:

  • Extent of Coverage: FPA policies can be written to cover various perils, such as sinking, stranding, collision, or fire. These are typically large-scale events that result in total loss or damage to the cargo.
  • Geographical Limits: Coverage can be geographically limited, meaning it only applies to losses occurring within a delineated area of transport.
  • Situational Exceptions: Certain exceptions might apply where partial losses are covered, such as when the ship is sunk or burnt.

Pros and Cons of FPA Coverage

When deciding whether an FPA clause is right for you, consider the following advantages and disadvantages:

Pros of FPA Coverage Cons of FPA Coverage
Lower premiums due to the reduced risk for insurers. Limited protection for cargo, especially for minor damages.
Suitability for low-risk cargo or routes. Potential for high out-of-pocket expenses in the event of partial loss.
Explicit understanding of covered perils helps in better risk management. Additional insurance may be necessary for comprehensive coverage, leading to higher overall costs.

When to Opt for an FPA Clause in Your Policy

You should consider an FPA clause in the following situations:

  • When transporting cargo of low value or durable goods less susceptible to damage.
  • If you are seeking to lower your insurance premiums and are willing to take on more risk.
  • When you are confident in the safety measures implemented by the carrier or in the stability of the shipping route.
  • If the additional cost of comprehensive coverage does not make economic sense for your goods.

How to Choose the Right Coverage

Selecting the appropriate coverage for your shipping needs can be a complex process. Considering the following steps can ensure you make an informed decision:

  1. Assess the Risk: Evaluate the potential risks associated with the cargo and route.
  2. Understand the Terms: Clearly understand the terms of the insurance policy, including the FPA clause and any exclusions.
  3. Consult with Experts: Speak with insurance agents or brokers who specialize in marine insurance to get professional advice.
  4. Compare Quotes: Obtain quotes from multiple insurers to compare coverage and premiums.
  5. Review Regularly: Reassess your policy regularly, as business needs and risks may evolve over time.

Frequently Asked Questions On Insurance Free Of Particular Average Clause: Unravel Myths

What Is Fpa In Insurance Terms?

Free of Particular Average (FPA) is a clause in maritime insurance contracts, which excludes claims for partial losses on goods, except under certain conditions.

How Does Fpa Coverage Function?

FPA coverage only protects against total losses, and it excludes partial damages unless caused by stranding, sinking, burning, or a collision.

Who Should Consider Fpa Clauses?

Shippers transporting goods in areas with high risk of total loss, but less concern for minor damages, should consider including FPA clauses.

What Distinguishes Fpa From Other Insurance Terms?

FPA is distinct because it specifically excludes partial loss or damage claims, only covering total losses or in extreme circumstances like collisions.


The Free of Particular Average clause plays a significant role in marine insurance by defining the scope of coverage. It’s a cost-effective solution for certain situations but requires a clear understanding of its limitations. By carefully evaluating your business’s specific needs and consulting with marine insurance experts, you can determine whether an FPA clause makes sense for your shipment’s insurance coverage.

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