Eclipse 500 Overview:
The Eclipse Aerospace EA500 is a small six-seat business jet that was originally manufactured by Eclipse Aviation, but was later upgraded and sold by Eclipse Aerospace. A short-lived production, the Eclipse 500 only produced 260 aircraft between December of 2006 and November of 2008. Ultimately, it was business woes and Chapter 11 bankruptcy that ultimately ended the aircraft’s run.
The aircraft was, however, mired in controversy regarding the FAA certification process around this particular aircraft. Congressional investigations regarding the aircraft and as subsequent FAA grounding in 2008 would forever put a stigma over the aircraft, despite strong reviews front the pilots who flew them.
The Eclipse 500 has recorded 4 hull-loss incidents one of which resulted in a fatality. Those four incidents include:
- July 30, 2008 – An Eclipse 500 was making a landing during a visual approach at West Chester-Brandywine Airport in Pennsylvania when the pilot failed to obtain the proper touchdown point. Excessive speed was a factor resulting in the aircraft skidding off the runway and down a 40ft embankment.
- June 1, 2011 – An Eclipse 500 attempted a landing in Nome, AK, without the landing gear engaged resulting in cracked center wing carry-through.
- August 21, 2015 – An Eclipse 500 failed to obtain a proper touch down point while landing at Danbury Airport in Connecticut. This caused the pilot to overshoot and run off the end of the runway.
- December 7, 2015 – An Eclipse 500 crashed in South Africa after the pilot was seen performing erratic maneuvers. The plane ultimately ended up in a downward spiral resulting in the crash and death of the pilot.
Eclipse 500 Insurance Cost:
Aviation insurance in general, is a very specialized industry and premiums vary depending on make and model of the aircraft, hull value, use of the aircraft, pilot history and qualifications and aircraft insurance rates even take into account the loss history of each specific make and model and the loss history of the aviation industry as a whole.
Eclipse 500 insurance, like all aviation insurance, is broken down into 2 specific coverages. The first is Liability Coverage, which is standard on every aircraft insurance policy and the second is optional hull coverage, which covers damage to the aircraft itself.
Eclipse 500 aviation liability insurance covers damage caused by the aircraft, outside of the aircraft, specifically property damage, bodily injury, and provides for legal defense in the event that the aircraft owner or policyholder is sued.
Aircraft liability insurance is typically offered for Eclipse 500’s in amounts between $1,000,000 and $25,000,000 per occurrence (per incident) and includes coverage for passengers, but typically limits that amount to between $100,000 and $1,000,000 per passenger. Passenger liability coverage is included within the total liability coverage amount.
A real-world example of how this aviation liability coverage would protect you: If, as a result of operating your Eclipse 500 you damaged property or caused bodily injury outside of the aircraft, you would have the full amount of total liability coverage to pay for damages that occurred, less the liability amount paid for passengers inside the aircraft. If the aircraft crashed and you had passengers inside the aircraft that were injured, your insurance policy would pay up to the policy passenger limit for each passenger.
This liability coverage also applies as a bubble that follows the aircraft around. If the aircraft is hangered, liability coverage extends throughout your hangar and it is this coverage that airports will typically require you to have. It’s not a separate insurance policy, it is actually coverage built into your standards airplane insurance policy.
Other liability options: Higher liability coverage on the Eclipse 500 is available to qualified pilots with experience in the make and model and a minimum Commercial/MEL/IFR license/ratings.
The second coverage on a Eclipse 500 insurance policy is hull coverage and is an optional coverage. Aircraft hull insurance covers damage to the aircraft itself and is an agreed value, not subject to depreciation. Agreed value is decided during the initial insurance quoting process, the aircraft owner requests an insurance quote for his or her Eclipse 500 and requests a quote including hull coverage in the amount of say $1,000,000. Once an aviation insurance company provides a quote, they are agreeing with you that your aircraft is worth $1,000,000.
*Insurance companies may place additional stipulations on quotes to prove the value of your aircraft prior to binding, if your agreed value is higher than bluebook.
Most aviation insurance companies do not offer deductibles higher than $0 deductibles, which means in the event of a total loss, if your aircraft was insured for $1,000,000, you would get a straight check for $1,000,000.
Eclipse 500 Insurance Cost Breakdown:
As of January 2021, there are 8 carriers quoting Eclipse 500 insurance in the U.S. We consider qualified pilots to have at least a Commercial License and IFR/MEL ratings, with 3,000 total hours, 1,000 MEL hours and 50 hours in the make/model.
For an annual policy with $1,000,000 in liability only coverage.
Premium range for qualified pilots: $3,000+ per year.
For an annual policy with $1,000,000 in liability coverage and $1,000,000 in hull coverage
Premium range for qualified pilots: $18,200-$22,600 per year.
BWI is a family-owned, nationwide insurance brokerage specializing in aviation insurance since 1977. Our dedicated Aviation Insurance Professionals are highly trained, hand-picked and experienced in helping Eclipse 500 owners and operators obtain the very best insurance coverage.
BWI offers comprehensive Eclipse 500 insurance policies for personal, business, charter, industrial aid, and commercial aviation uses.
For more information or to get an actual Eclipse 500 insurance quote, please fill out a quote request online here or call us at 800.666.4359
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*Always consult your insurance policy for exact coverage specifications, exclusions and details.