Coverage Tip

Your 21-year old daughter finally saved enough money to move out of your house and into her own apartment. When she moves, she takes “her” car with her. It is not really “her “car, as it is titled to you, so the car remains on your personal auto policy on which both you and your spouse are the Named Insureds.

The Problem is that several months later, while jogging, the daughter is hit by an uninsured car and seriously injured, so you turn in a claim for your daughter’s injuries to your auto insurance company.
No problem, right? After all, your personal auto policy still has the daughter listed as a driver and the vehicle is still insured on the policy.

Wrong! There is a BIG problem, as neither Part B – Medical Payments nor Part C- Uninsured Motorists will provide coverage for your daughter’s injuries.

Former “Family Members” – Coverage and Lack of Coverage
Children who no longer reside with their parent (or parents) are only an “insured” under the parent’s auto policy when driving or occupying the parent’s “your covered auto”. These former “family members” now fall within the commonly used term of permissive user and are only covered under their parent’s policy for:
1. Liability while driving the parent’s “your covered auto”
2. Medical Payments while occupying the parent’s “your covered auto”
3. Uninsured/Underinsured Motorists while occupying the parent’s “your covered auto”

Former “family members” no longer have the following coverages:
1. Liability while in an auto other than the parent’s “your covered auto”
2. Medical Payments while in any auto other than the parent’s “your covered auto”
3. Medical Payments while a pedestrian
4. Uninsured Motorists while in any auto other than the parent’s “your covered auto”
5. Uninsured Motorists while a pedestrian

No doubt you will agree – these are important coverages to be without!

The Solution is to write a personal auto policy with the child as a Named Insured and attach the Named Non-Owner Coverage endorsement (ISO: PP 03 22). This endorsement is used in the ISO Personal Auto program to provide insurance coverage for the person who does not own a vehicle, but still wants insurance protection.

It can be used to provide Liability, Medical Payments and Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist coverage for the individual(s) named in the Schedule. These coverages must be individually selected with a Limit of Liability and a Premium shown on the schedule.

Summer Time Fun

Summer is here! If you don’t have enough to do already here’s a few things that will add beauty to your life and home.

If you’ve installed a deck at your home or rental property, it’s a considerable investment that adds to the value of your property. Adding plants and creative outdoor lighting will help you make the most of this space.

Plants are an easy and inexpensive way to add color to your deck. Do some research online or ask a local gardening store about what kinds of containers and plants are best for your area. This is a great time of year to get started in most climates!

Hanging planters are another way to add color and flair to your deck. Local gardening stores sell hanging baskets already planted with a variety of plants and flowers, or you can create your own by selecting flowers and plants that work with your climate and design plan.

Create a railing planter by using materials that are left over from building your deck, or buy new materials and stain them to match your deck.

Consider installing some lighting on your deck. Options include lamps over the corner posts, small lights at the base of each post, step lights or umbrella lights. Check out a home improvement store to look at different options and styles.

All wood decks should be stained to protect them from sun and water damage. Always make sure the wood is clean and dry before you get started, and then follow the directions on the container. Don’t get started if rain is in the forecast – most stains need several hours to dry after application.

The Value of an Independent Agent

Why choose and agent? and why and independent agent? Trusted advise in making difficult financial decisions is the first and easy answer to that question. It’s always helpful to have a professional on your side, especially when it can save you money in both the long and short term.
Check out this video for some additional ways.

Is Your Airbag Safe?

Own a previously owned vehicle? Or been in an accident where the airbag deployed? Your airbag system could be at risk.
When purchasing a used car, use available resources to verify the car’s history including if the airbag has ever been deployed.
Less-than-reputable repair shops have scammed unsuspecting car owners by installing non-functioning or inappropriate airbags rather than properly repairing or replacing the system.
Two out of five vehicles “totaled” or given salvage titles are rebuilt and resold. This literally opens cars up for airbag fraud.
Avoid airbag fraud: get a vehicle history report on any used car and only use reputable mechanics and body shops when you need to.

Practice Fire Safety

Watch for ways you can practice fire safety to keep your family safe.

Run at least two fire drills per year so everyone is aware of what to do if a real fire occurs. Set up multiple scenarios during different times of day and designate a meeting place outside your home. Remember to include family pets.

Make sure every window and door is fully functional before each fire drill. Teach your family how to unlock and open all possible exits. Instruct them to break their window with a heavy object if it does not open.

Store a multi-purpose fire extinguisher in the kitchen and on every level of your home. Keep them recharged and ready to use and teach all family members how to operate them. If the fire is not out after using the extinguisher, get out and call the fire department.

Install at least one smoke detector on every level of your home and make sure there is a battery back-up for hard-wired alarms. Test them monthly and change the batteries at least once per year.

If a fire does occur, crawl to the nearest safe exit with your head 12 to 24 inches above the floor. Carefully touch the bottom of all doors to check for heat before opening them, and if your clothes catch on fire, remember the stop, drop and roll rule.

How to Stay Home Without Actually Being There. Tips to Help Prevent Break-Ins.

Whether you’re headed out for the evening or a vacation, make it look like you never left. Use these tips for safeguarding your home from break-ins.

1.  Trick them with timing. Use automatic timers to turn inside and porch lights on and off at appropriate times. Connect a timer to a television or radio as well.

2.  Get rid of the evidence. Put your newspaper and mail delivery on hold, and have a friend or trusted neighbor pick up circulars while checking on your home.

3.  Slow them down. Research shows that a burglar will move on if it takes more than four to five minutes to break in to a home. Install metal or solid wood doors with deadbolt locks. Make sure windows, sliding glass doors and garage doors are securely locked.