What gifts did you and your family receive over the holiday season? Such a busy time of the year that most people don’t stop and think the gift you just got may need some additional insurance. There are 3 things you need to think about when you are considering additional insurance.
- Could the item create a liability issue for me?
- Is the item covered on my home policy?
- If it is does my deductible apply?
Liability issues are often overlooked. Liability comes into play when you are responsible for either damage or injury to someone. That is an oversimplification but all you really need to consider when you are thinking about if something needs added to your insurance. Here are few examples of items that can create liability issues:
Balls going through neighbor windows
Trampolines (when you invite other children to play on them or when you are not home and children get on them to play)
Hopefully you are getting the idea. You need to exercise a great deal of caution when you have things like the items on the list. A drone that crashes into the neighbors new BMW is going to cause a liability problem when the neighbor wants the car painted. A friend of your daughters borrows her hoverboard and falls and brakes her arm could cause a liability issue if the parents ask you to pay for the medical bills.
Trampolines require a new paragraph. They are inherently dangerous and always require adult supervision. (Bet you are glad you aren’t my kid right now;) The truth is even with the safety cage around them kids get hurt on them and hurt badly. Even worse is when you are not home and the neighborhood kids come over to play on it and get hurt badly. Yes, you are still responsible for the injuries even if you didn’t invite them over.
Let’s move on to property. We get calls every day from folks who just bought a new_______(fill in the blank) and want to know if it is covered on their home policy. Most items are covered but some do have limitations on the amount that is covered or if they are covered for theft. Most times the answer is “Yes, it is covered.” But, your deductible still applies. If you carry a $1,000 deductible the drone you bought your husband is covered but when your son crashes it into the pond and it sinks to the bottom your $1,000 deductible STILL applies thus you will not be getting money to replace it.
There are other options for insurance coverage other than your traditional home policy. Services like SquareTrade will offer insurance on products like your new smartphone, tablets, laptops and even appliances and televisions. I have used them for personal items and have been very pleased with the responsiveness and they have repaired and even given me the money back for items insured with them. You will have to weigh the cost of the insurance versus the cost of the items to decide if a service like that is the right way to go.
Here is a short list of some gift items you should review the insurance for:
- • Jewelry – most policies have a $1,000 limit per item for theft or “mysterious disappearance” (like when the stone falls out of a ring). If your item is more valuable consult your insurance agent.
• Drones – if you purchased a professional grade drone consult with your insurance agent. You can purchase property coverage for them and may need to consider some liability insurance.
• Guns – there is a limit for your total gun collection on the home policy of $10,000. If your collection is under that limit but you inherit or purchase a rare or antique gun consult with your agent.
• Electronics – almost all electronics (cameras, tablets, smartphones, TV’s, game consoles) fall into the category of it is covered under the property coverage on your home policy but your deductible applies.
• Golf clubs, baseball equipment, or other sporting goods are covered under the property limit on your home policy but your deductible applies.
• Collections like coins, stamps, antiques, artwork etc…may need to be scheduled on your home policy depending on the value and if the items are replaceable. That involves purchasing coverage for them separately but consult with your agent if you have or acquire any of these things.
Best rule of thumb is when it doubt consult with your insurance agent just to be sure. Just take a few minutes and can save you a headache later.
Call O’Connor Insurance at 704-510-8884 with any questions you may have. In everything we do at O’Connor Insurance Associates we aim to treat you the way that you want to be treated. Insurance for your personal, business & life.