Risk & Business Magazine General Insurance Service - Page 27

UMBRELLA INSURANCE

Are You Getting The Most Protection Out Of Your Home And Auto Policies ?

A multicar pileup is traced back to your vehicle as the root cause of the accident . An ill-timed social media comment sparks a viral defamation backlash . Your teenager has a party that ends in a bonfire , fireworks , and bodily injury to several guests .

Any of these situations can land you on the hook for a major lawsuit . Innocent or not , you ’ re playing defense in court . Your existing insurance helps with legal fees , but the price to defend yourself can quickly exhaust a typical $ 300,000 home insurance policy . When you reach your limits , it ’ s cut-bait time . That ’ s not the moment to be left floating alone — sharks circling — because your policy limits are exhausted .
You ’ ve bundled your home and auto policies to maximize discounts — smart . Adding an umbrella policy can be even smarter , helping to keep you protected and afloat in a dire situation .
UMBRELLA COVERAGE ISN ’ T JUST FOR THE RICH OR RISKY
You might think an umbrella isn ’ t necessary because you ’ re not rich or that $ 1 million is overkill . You ’ d be wrong .
Let ’ s say you lose a personal injury lawsuit . The compensation amount might be left to a jury to decide . If that jury is asked to account for pain and suffering , future lost earnings , or loss
of quality of life , you might be hit with a huge settlement . The court will find a way for you to pay even if you think you can ’ t afford it .
What you currently have in your checking account is irrelevant because you have assets : your home , your kids ’ college savings , your retirement , your current income , and your future income . It ’ s all on the line and fair game when calculating your net worth in a lawsuit .
BENEFITS OF AN UMBRELLA
Almost anyone is at risk for being sued . An umbrella can be a nice addition to your risk management playbook . An umbrella :
• extends the coverage across your existing policies ;
• is normally cheaper than raising limits on individual separate policies ;
• can broaden your coverage once the umbrella kicks in ( less restrictive language );
• has coverage options from $ 1 million to $ 10 million ;
• extends coverage on defamation and other clauses named in your policies ;
• helps with legal fees and judgment costs ; and
• allows insurance companies to negotiate a settlement .
Unfortunately , lawsuits happen . They also happen to be expensive . Thankfully , plenty of asset protection is possible when you put an umbrella over your policies . Easy .
CONNECT WITH US FOR A REVIEW OF YOUR RISK
Connect with us to find out what ’ s covered on your current home and auto policies . We ’ re happy to explain how an umbrella policy can broaden coverage and protect what ’ s most important to you ! +
BY : MICHELLE SNIDER , PERSONAL RISK ADVISOR , GENERAL INSURANCE SERVICES
Michelle is a Valparaiso native . She currently resides in Morgan Township with her high school sweetheart husband , Jordan , and two fun-loving boys . In her free time , Michelle enjoys volunteering at Valparaiso Nazarene Church , watching baseball , running , serving in the community with Kiwanis , and spending quality time with those she loves .
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