Understanding Your Liability

by Community Manager on ‎12-16-2014 09:56 AM - last edited on ‎12-23-2014 02:58 PM by Lithium Technologies (6,505 Views)

Unexpected events can test the limits of liability coverage in a home or auto insurance policy. Fortunately, additional protection is available.

 

Accidents happen. And if you or a family member is responsible, you could find yourself involved in a liability claim situation. 

 

Certain life events and purchases can make you more vulnerable to a liability claim. A new teen driver in your house, a new pet, installing a swimming pool or trampoline in the yard, or buying a new vehicle, such as a boat or ATV, can lead to accidents for which you may be held liable. They’re good reasons to review your liability coverage and make sure you have enough.

In addition, here are several scenarios that could trigger liability claims.

 

Entertaining Guests

If a visitor in your home gets hurt, you could be liable for injuries. Examples include a child slipping on your pool deck, your pet biting or tripping someone, or an inebriated guest to whom you’ve served alcohol falling and getting hurt.  

 

Damaging Others’ Property 

A car crash is the most common source of liability claims, due to  the high incidence of injuries and  property damage. Around the house, liability claims could result from scenarios such as borrowing your neighbor’s lawn mower and damaging it, for example, or a tree limb falling from your yard and damaging your neighbor’s property.

 

Family Members

Whether it happens in your home or not, a family member’s actions could put you at risk of a  liability claim. For example, if your child is playing with matches at a friend’s house and starts a fire, your homeowners policy would pay for damage and injuries from the fire up to its maximum liability coverage.

 

Liability coverage in home and auto policies includes caps on how much they’ll pay out, and sometimes it’s not enough—especially if you have valuable assets, high income or are at greater risk of a liability claim. For additional protection, consider an umbrella policy, which for a low premium can provide an additional $1 million or more in coverage.

 

Alternatively, you might be tempted to lower a policy’s liability limit in order to lower your premium, but doing so puts you at greater financial risk if you are faced with  a liability situation.

 

Life is constantly changing, so be sure to review your policies with an insurance agent regularly to ensure you have appropriate liability coverage for your current situation and needs.

 

For more information on your coverage and liability, stop by any AAA office or visit AAA.com/Insurance.

 

A version of this story appears in the January/February 2015 issue of AAA Living magazine.

 

Photo credit: Jim Erickson

 

Comments
by jimyoung37
on ‎08-04-2015 07:54 PM

Interesting that in your "Understanding your Liability" article you would recommend buying an umbrella liability policy when you don't offer an umbrella liability policy.  It's what keeps me from trying to use your insurance services.

by CRG
‎03-17-2016 08:45 AM - edited ‎03-17-2016 08:45 AM

Umbrella policies are offered by AAA in the Tampa Bay area!  Please call your local AAA office and ask for the insurance department to get more details!

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