It’s sad but true, we live in a society where the almost-standard response to a bad situation is to threaten a lawsuit. With that in mind, it’s important to realize that certain home and car owners fall into higher risk categories.
Do you own a swimming pool?
Homes with swimming pools are considered higher risk because of the potential for injury or drowning. Many personal insurance companies require certain safeguards to be in place before a policy can be issued. Swimming pools are considered an “attractive nuisance” for children so it’s a good idea to have proper safeguards anyway. The primary requirement is a fence surrounding the entire area of the pool with a proper height. Many homeowners already have this special changes aren’t necessarily required.
Do you own a high performance sports car?
Though they are a lot of fun, driving a sports car can be like driving around with a bulls-eye on your bumper. Your auto insurance company could charge you a higher premium because of the liability associated with driving a sports car, regardless of driving record, because they may be more expensive to replace and there is a temptation to drive above the speed limit. Sports cars also tend to be lighter, which means they’ll move around on the road more, causing more damage to other people and their property if there is an accident. They also have a much higher risk of theft.
Do you own your home?
Just the fact that you have a sidewalk outside your home, a driveway and walkway, puts you at a greater risk for being sued if someone trips on a crack or raised or uneven area, slips on ice or snow in the winter, or even just falls on your property.
Other Contributing Factors
What other activities do you participate in that could put you at risk? Are you a room-mom who loves to make cupcakes for her child’s birthday? Are you a baseball coach or parent who transports other people’s children to practice in your car? Do you have a dog that might bite someone? Do you have a new teenage driver in your household – a minor you’re still financially responsible for?
It’s upsetting to have to consider being sued, but we are a litigious society, so it’s a reality. Fortunately, having a personal umbrella policy over your homeowners, auto, and specialty coverage policies can give you enhanced protection, up to $10 million or more, depending on your needs.
Talk to your insurance professional about the personal liability protection your policies currently offer and how you can add to it, if needed. The unexpected may happen and the nominal fees are worth the risk.