While debating about this article’s title, I toyed with a variation: “For the Homeowner and Renter, Umbrella Insurance Also Makes ‘Cents’! You see, though you may be paying what you think is enough in your share of policy premiums, acquiring umbrella coverage will actually save you a bundle, should you find yourself embroiled in a lawsuit.
Read the account below and you are sure to understand.
Spotty was a likable little mutt. As the Jones family’s dog, he had certain recognized rights, one being the freedom to sprawl himself comfortable along the upper part of the house driveway.
One bright and sunny summer afternoon, Spotty was doing what he did best. From the driveway vantage point, he observed the next door neighbor, Mr. Smith showing off his talents as a seasoned skater on roller blades right in front of the Jones’ home. As Mr. Smith was about to make a stunning turn, he fell. The fall caused more than its share of embarrassment for the ‘pro’. Mr. Smith actually incurred physical injury – a broken leg!
The injury was bad enough to warrant surgery, said the doctors.
Mr. Smith’s medical costs ran him about $35,000. But there was more to it. Mr. Smith’s lost wages as a result of time off from work due to the injury accumulated to $1800.
By now you surely must be wondering what the story line has to do with our hero, Spotty.
Perhaps you guessed it. Mr. Smith filed a $220,000 lawsuit against his neighbor’s the Jones family. He alleged that Spotty had been the cause of his misfortune and related damages.
There’s a happy ending to the story because the deciding jury believed the witnesses’ version that validated Mr. Jones through their testimony: the dog, Spotty, was in fact a good eight feet away from Mr. Smith when the injury occurred.
A happy Mr. Jones returned to his home following the court case. Something suddenly troubled him, though.
What if he had been judged in the wrong? Mr. Jones knew his homeowners insurance would not cover him for much of the alleged damages due to the limits on the policy. Was there a way to acquire coverage that would?
After speaking to his agent, he understood there were countless scenarios besides pet damage that could get him in trouble via a lawsuit. He decided to purchase an umbrella policy – coverage that would protect by way of $1 to $5 million in the event he ever needed it. Coverage that clearly made sense – as well as cents!
by M Wyzanski