Many people often think that their homeowners and auto insurance is enough to cover expenses as well as protect assets should an accident occur. What no one expects to happen, but very likely could, is an incident where they are sued for an extremely large amount of money that goes above their liability insurance limits. Most people do not carry umbrella insurance though, because they think that nothing catastrophic will ever happen to them. Unfortunately, when these situations do occur, they will realize that everything they worked for in their life is now at risk of being lost because of one unfortunate situation.
Let’s say that you are involved in a car accident where the other driver is severely injured, and their luxury vehicle is damaged. They could sue, and if the award is, for example, $1,000,000, but your coverage has a limit of $500,000, then they could go after you for the $500,000 difference. Most people don’t have $500,000 lying around, so your home, savings accounts, other assets, and even future salary could be at risk.
Umbrella insurance, which is a form of extended liability insurance, pays for any amount that goes above the liability limit for your home or auto insurance. In the previous example, if umbrella insurance was a factor, then that extra $500,000 would be covered, and your assets would be protected. Umbrella insurance pays up to the amount you select, which usually ranges anywhere from $1,000,000 to $5,000,000. This means that your car insurance liability will be used first, and then anything above that amount will come from the umbrella policy.
Umbrella insurance is not just for rich people; everyone can benefit from it since it is affordable. When an insurance claim is filed, most of the money that pays for liability expenses comes from your regular insurance plan, which is why regular insurance is more expensive. Umbrella insurance coverage is only used when the expenses go above and beyond that amount, and therefore makes it less costly.
The more assets you have, the more important it is to have this type of additional insurance. It is important to know the value of your home and other property to help you assess how much additional coverage will be necessary. Finding yourself in a stressful situation after an accident is tough in itself, but if you are protected financially, it will help you focus on what is important, and not on what you could possibly lose.