When a catastrophic accident happens...
Umbrella insurance could protect you
When catastrophic accidents happen, your insurance limits may not be adequate to protect you from ensuing lawsuits. Liability coverage on your homeowners, automobile motorcycle or boat insurance may not be enough to pay the damages, court costs and legal fees, especially when you are served a lawsuit for millions of dollars. Umbrella policies are designed to protect you against these type of lawsuits and can even protect you against lawsuits that are not covered at all by your other policies. Umbrella policies are the most affordable and broad type of liability insurance you can buy, providing you extra comprehensive coverage for the most severe disasters.
You should consult with an agent who can help you decide how much additional coverage you need. A personal umbrella policy typically gives you between $1 - $5 million in liability coverage over and above your homeowners and auto policies. Your umbrella liability limit is added to your 'underlying policies', such as your homeowners, boat, motorcycle, or auto policy. If you are sued for an amount that is larger than the coverage limit in one of these underlying policies, your umbrella policy will cover you for the additional damages up to the umbrella coverage limit.
You or your spouse or child might get involved in a serious car accident. The other driver could be permanently disabled and never be able to work again. If lawsuit follows and a court awards the other driver $1.5 million in damages, your auto insurance policy with $500,000 will not cover all of the damages. A lifetime of debt could be in your future. With a $1 million personal umbrella policy, the entire $1.5 million would be covered.
In general, an umbrella policy will cover you for accidents involving your home, your vehicles, and even recreational vehicles such as your boats, watercraft, ATV's or other power sports equipment. You can even endorse your umbrella policy to include coverage for your business. If you run a business out of your home, you should make sure to request this endorsement.
Umbrella policies are so broad in scope, they usually even include coverage for liability exposures not covered in your average homeowners or auto policy, including invasion of privacy, libel, slander, false arrest or imprisonment, malicious prosecution and defamation of character. And what if you are sued outside of the United States? Umbrella policies will protect you internationally as well. This policy will not only protect you, but also your spouse and those relatives living in your home.
Why it is important to consider Umbrella Insurance:
You may be sued for more than your total assets
You may be sued for future earnings
You auto & home policies usually don't cover that much
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You should carefully consult with one of our agents to discuss what limit is appropriate for you and your household members. Consider the total value of all of your assets, including your home, cars, savings, precious items and investments. You may be sued for even more that this total value, and a quality lawyer will make a claim against your future earnings. Depending on your 'earning potential' you may be sued for income you haven't even earned yet! This could lead to bankruptcy and a lifetime of financial burden. Lawyers will seek reparations for their clients' lost wages. The average adult will typically earn at least $1,000,000 over the course of 20 years, and a working professional or local business owner may make 3-5 times this much. Your auto and homeowners policies are not constructed to bear such a heavy liability suit, and for a relatively minimal cost, you can make sure you are covered no matter how large the lawsuit.