Do You Need an Umbrella Liability Policy?

Posted by Jim Pietro on Aug 30, 2011 10:53:51 AM

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These days, it seems as though every time you pick up a newspaper or turn on the TV, someone is suing somebody over something. A dog bites a neighbor's child. A woman is injured when she slips and falls at her friend's home. A distracted teenager causes an automobile accident where the driver and passengers in the other car are injured. Medical bills and other damages can add up quickly in situations like these. And in an increasing number of cases, a lawsuit may follow.

I hope you'll never be sued, but should it ever happen, I hope you'll be protected by adequate insurance. As you know, your homeowners or auto policy will pay for judgments against you up to the limits of the policy. But what if you were faced with a million dollar judgment? Would you have to sell your home? Lose your savings? Drain your retirement accounts?

This is where umbrella insurance kicks in. As its name suggests, it offers an extra layer of liability protection over and above the limits on your basic homeowners or auto policies. Most insurance companies will require you to have about $250,000 of liability insurance on your automobile policy and $300,000 on your homeowners policy before selling you an umbrella liability policy for $1 million of additional coverage.

How much does this extra protection cost? While it depends on several factors, it most likely will cost less than you expect. For example, if you carry insurance on your home and one or two automobiles, many companies will offer a $1 million personal umbrella liability policy for between $150 and $300 a year. The next million of coverage costs about $75, and each additional million runs about $50.

If you already have an umbrella policy, congratulations! If you dont' have this protection, I invite you to talk with a Mid-State Insurance advisor. We'll review your current coverage and answer your questions about how an umbrella policy works with your home and auto policies as well as with boat, condo or renters policies. Then we'll make recommendations designed to give you peace of mind now - and protection for your financial future if the unthinkable were to happen.

Topics: umbrella insurance, Jim's Blog, Mid-State Insurance

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