Why it's Important to Have Insurance When Shipping Sports Memorabilia

Posted by Benjamin Meskin on Apr 22, 2021 9:00:00 AM
Benjamin Meskin

As a collector or hobbyist interested in sports memorabilia, you have probably already worried about what may be many owner’s worst nightmare – theft, loss, or damage to your valuable collection. Accidents can happen while at home, when shipping your collection, or during transit to sports memorabilia auctions, and you may be wondering if you need shipping insurance.

Having insurance coverage cannot replace these unique items if they are lost, stolen, or damaged beyond repair. Still, it can give you some peace of mind knowing you have the right coverage in place for the monetary loss of your memorabilia. 

Signed baseball


A recent theft in the news highlights the need for proper insurance coverage when transporting your collection of sports memorabilia – several Tom Brady rookie cards were stolen from a vehicle transporting them to a sale in another state. The cards were valued at about $100,000, according to their owner. 

Shipping insurance for shipping sports memorabilia is a specialized type of cover, so it is essential to learn about it and talk to the experts at Cabrella for more information.


Why is it Important to Have Shipping Insurance for Sports Memorabilia?

Having the proper insurance coverage in place is essential for many of your expensive or irreplaceable assets, and your sports memorabilia collection is no different. Your prized Hank Aaron baseball card, autographed Tampa Bay Buccaneers Super Bowl LV ball, or your signed Joe Frazier boxing glove should be protected whether at home or shipped for display or sale. 

Insurance coverage for shipping high-value items is a specialized type of coverage, though. It is important to understand the limitations of coverage you may already have, as well as the types of shipping insurance you may decide to purchase to cover your sports memorabilia during transit. 

Shipping insurance can provide peace of mind, cash flow protection, and protect your reputation as a trader or seller of high-value items. Since so many collectibles are fragile, breakable, or irreplaceable, having coverage is even more important.

Sports memorabilia collection in a glass case


Limitations of homeowner’s policies 

When it comes to shipping sports memorabilia, having the right insurance coverage is imperative. Some collectors think their collection is covered by their homeowners insurance policy, but this is often not the case. 

If your home insurance policy offers any reimbursement, it may be limited to the actual cash value of your damaged item – which factors in depreciation and does not consider its value from being a collectible or one-of-a-kind item. The actual cash value is likely to be lower than what your actual replacement value would be – if the item can be replaced, that is.

Further, many home or renters insurance policies have specific exclusions or limitations on high value or target items including jewelry, fine art and collectibles. These items are either not covered at all or covered up to a lower limit - unless specifically scheduled and endorsed to the policy for additional premium. It is important to speak to your insurance agent or broker to ensure they are properly covered.

While some homeowners policies may offer additional coverage for collectibles by endorsement, it is often a good practice to purchase more specialized cover in the form of shipping insurance to cover your sports memorabilia during transit.

sports memorabilia collection


Limitations of Carrier Liability Cover

Carrier liability could offer some minimal protection if your collection is damaged in transit. However, for the carrier to make a payment, they have to be considered liable for the loss or damage. Even if they are found responsible and must issue payment, you could face serious issues when trying to prove the value and even then, most carriers will only cover based on the cost of the item. In other words, if you purchased that baseball card in 1990 for $200 and it is now worth $100,000, you would only receive the $200 - even if purchasing $100,000 worth of coverage.

It does not consider the value of the items lost or damaged in the calculation – this means the amount you may receive from carrier liability is minimal compared to the value of your collectible item.


What is Shipping Insurance for Sports Memorabilia? 

Shipping insurance is a type of cargo insurance often referred to as inland marine coverage. This means it covers property in transit – inland marine refers to the property being moved overland while ocean marine would refer to the property being transported over water. Cargo insurance covers items from when they leave their origination point through to their endpoint.

Box damaged during shipping


There are three different types of cargo policies to consider: 

  • All-Risk Policy – All risk coverage is the broadest form and does what the name implies – covers all risks of physical damage or loss according to the policy terms, conditions, and exclusions. It is important to remember an all-risk policy is still constrained by its terms and conditions, so some perils may be excluded or limited. 
  • Shipment-by-Shipment Policy – This coverage is designed to cover one shipment at a time and is purchased separately when it is needed. It can be useful for people who do not need to ship collectibles frequently. If you do ship often, shipment-by-shipment coverage may prove more expensive than another type of annual cargo policy. There are also additional exclusions and limitations not found in all-risk policies to take note of if you do pursue a shipment-by-shipment policy. 

  • With Particular Average – In ocean marine policies, a policy with particular average means it covers partial damage sustained by a specific ship or cargo load. Because ocean marine policies often do not cover partial losses, those that do tend to specify the type of peril covered. A policy that is Free of Particular Average, on the other hand, excludes partial losses regardless of cause. 

Vintage baseball cards


Easy Shipping Solutions for high-value collectibles 

Now that you understand the need for shipping insurance for your sports memorabilia and other collections, finding a provider that simplifies the process is critical. Cabrella offers customized shipping software solutions to allow you to print labels, coordinate coverage, and use the shipping carrier of your choice. Cabrella works with various industries. 


In addition to integrations with major shippers like FedEx and UPS, Cabrella also integrates with major shopping retailers like Etsy, eBay, Amazon, and Shopify to make shipping through these resellers easy. Cabrella integrates with shipping software companies like Shippo and Shipstation, too. One of our integrations is sure to meet your shipping needs. 

If you need to file a claim for any losses or damages, having one system that houses all of your shipping insurance records can help to simplify the claims process for you. Cabrella makes all the steps of shipping sports memorabilia easy.

shipping center


Final Thoughts on Shipping Insurance for Shipping Sports Memorabilia 

Cabrella offers a robust suite of helpful products to assist when shipping sports memorabilia. Our technology allows for faster claims processing and streamlines many aspects of policy administration and shipping to make it easy for you. It is important to get it right when shipping your valuable and irreplaceable collection. 

Cabrella works with all of the major shipping carriers like FedEx and UPS and can help you customize your shipping options to best meet your needs since every collector and hobbyist is different. If you need help with finding the right shipping insurance for sports memorabilia auctions or other sales, Cabrella can find the right solution for you.


How do I Learn More?

To learn more about the need for shipping insurance, contact the experts at Cabrella at 844-422-2735. Our professionals will be happy to answer any questions you have.

Tags: Shipping Insurance, collectibles, Sports Memorabilia

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