In a recent Virginian- Pilot article from yesterday a, “…man is suing the Spirit of Norfolk pleasure yacht in federal court, saying the ship features such a powerful anti-skid coating on its top deck he fell two years ago while playing corn hole”. The article goes into further description that, “The lawsuit claims [that the injured party] was injured on the ship June 26, 2016, while it was docked near Town Point Park in Norfolk. After boarding the vessel as a paying passenger, [the plaintiff] walked to the top deck. The lawsuit described it as “crowded with furniture,” but also said there was at least one game of corn hole. The lawsuit said [he] picked up a beanbag and attempted to throw it. In the process, his feet caught on the anti-skid decking and he fell.”

Life doesn’t always go as planned. Sometimes even the best intended plans can still backfire. For instance, the Spirit of Norfolk recently underwent a $1.2 million renovation in early 2016 to include updating the anti-slip surface of the deck to avoid slip-and-fall accidents according to the article. However, now, they are facing a hefty lawsuit.

While you may not have to worry about someone slipping on the deck of your yacht (or, maybe you do, we can help with that too!), you are vulnerable to other random and unforeseen instances that may expose you and your family to legal costs or lawsuits. If you own a home, you have a risk exposure. If you drive a car, you have a risk exposure. If you have a teen driver, you face a very high risk exposure. In a world where anyone can sue anyone for anything, how do you protect your family and your assets? Read on for these easy ways to build higher levels of protection into your financial plan to make sure your insurance is protecting you when you need it most.

1-) Increase the underlying liability coverage limits on your home policy. Make sure that you are carrying $500,000 on your home policy for liability protection. Why? The difference to go from $300k-$500k per year is only a few dollars different on your home premium. Really the price is negligible for the increase in coverage that you get. However, it’s a big jump in coverage (almost doubled) and it can get you a discount on your Umbrella Policy. The very small increase in premium up-front will be well worth it if you need to place a claim under the liability portion of your policy.

2-) Carry an Umbrella Policy. An Umbrella Policy (aka PUL) goes over the underlying liability limits of your home and auto policies. For instance, if you have $500K worth of liability protection on your home policy and a $1 million PUL, you have a much higher level of protection to cover legal expenses. Your PUL also covers over the underlying liability coverage of your auto policy as well. This is always an important coverage since driving represents one of the largest liability exposures that people daily undertake. Think about it….you are operating a large vehicle at fast speeds among other drivers that, you hope, are paying attention and obeying the rules of the road. If you have a teenage driver, you have your assets riding around on the hood of your car. If you teen hits another driver or causes damages, the injured person or people can sue you directly for your minor child. Without liability protection, you may be facing the cost of legal fees and the lawsuit out of pocket…..which is probably not a fun prospect.

3-) Review your coverage. Having the proper insurance is part of protecting your financial plan. Insurance protection can provide coverage for liability exposures, can help repair and rebuild your home in the event of a loss and can even help cover the cost of you and your family staying somewhere else while your home is being repaired after a covered claim. The purpose of insurance is to protect you from the things you cannot foresee and cannot cover out of pocket. Therefore, having the right coverage in place is vitally important to building your financial plan. You should always ask your insurance agent to re-assess your rate and coverage at your renewal. Also, shopping your rate with an insurance brokerage instead of a company that offers only one product line can save you time and money as well by allowing you to compare rates from multiple carriers for your home and auto. When you are getting your insurance reviewed, consider asking about higher levels of liability coverage. By shopping coverages, you may be able to increase your insurance protection and save money, which is a win-win all around. Also, to help lower your insurance premiums, consider taking higher deductibles on your home and auto insurance. However, keep in mind that the deductible amount that you choose will be the amount that you are responsible for paying out of pocket before your insurance policy kicks in. Be sure to choose a deductible that you can comfortably meet out of pocket.

To get the tailored policy coverage that you need for your home, valuables, auto, LIFE, or business, call The CHOICE Insurance Team today at 757-416-5100 and ask for a free, comprehensive review.  Give us a call today!

 

All the Best,

The CHOICE Team

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In 2008 Choice Insurance Agency was created out of the former Realty Consultants Insurance Agency founded in 1980 by George Ayers Capt. USN Ret. Since 2008 the Choice Insurance Agency has more than tripled in size and is continue on a track of rapid growth. The Choice Insurance Agency focuses on four areas of expertise: Private Client Group, Coastal Coverage, Senior Programs and Commercial/Business Insurance. Our business model has allowed us to expand into all of the states on the Eastern Seaboard from New York to Florida including Pennsylvania and DC to better serve our ever-growing client base. As an Insurance brokerage stationed in Hampton Roads with access to well over 40+ insurance carriers, the Choice Insurance Agency is able to shop for the best rates, cover those picky coastal zones and create a tailored plan to fit your insurance needs. The Choice Insurance Agency. Call us today and see why we are the top “CHOICE” in Hampton Roads.