General Insurance FAQ
Why is my Social Security number needed to get a quote?
Your credit is often used for underwriting and rating personal insurance policies. Insurance companies have found that when people have better credit scores, they often have fewer insurance claims. Therefore, they believe that if you are responsible enough to keep up a high credit score, you are likely a more conscientious driver and able to protect your property better than those with lower credit scores.
Do I have to get a certificate of insurance from my sub-contractors?
The premiums for both your workers compensation and general liability policies are determined by payroll. Therefore, without a copy of their certificate your premiums will increase because the insurance company will assume they are uninsured and include them in your total payroll. If they are insured, it’s always good to get a copy of their certificate of insurance.
A houseguest was hurt while visiting. Is this situation covered?
There are several ways that this can be covered. Regardless of who was at fault, your homeowners insurance policy provides medical payments coverage, which will pay for the medical bills up to the limit specified. If you are found at fault for the incident, your personal liability coverage can protect you as well.
What’s the difference between Actual Cash Value, Replacement Cost and Agreed Value?
Actual Cash Value means that in the event of an accident or loss to your boat, your insurance company will pay you the replacement cost minus depreciation. An insurance company can significantly depreciate an older boat, regardless of its good condition. This can unfortunately leave you with only receiving a portion of what it actually may be worth.
Replacement Cost coverage means that the insurance company will pay you for what it would cost to buy a new boat of the same like and kind. While this is ideal, this type of boat insurance policy is extremely rare.
The best type of coverage to get for your boat is an Agreed Value policy. When this policy is in place, you and your insurance company agree on the value to insure it for right at the start. This means that in the event of a total loss, the insurance company will pay the agreed amount in full for the claim. Keep in mind that this insurance policy usually involved the insurance company annually adjusting this amount, and may require a survey to prove the value of the boat.
How can I get the best insurance rates for my home and car?
The best way to save on insurance is by going through an independent insurance agent who can shop the marketplace to find the lowest rates that fit your specific needs. Combining your home and auto insurance policies within the same insurance company is also a great way to save, often providing multi-policy discount rates that can save you up to 20%.
If I rent a car, is it covered?
This depends on your auto insurance policy. If you have comprehensive and collision on any vehicle on your policy, then there is coverage minus the deductible. However, there are several factors that come into play. For example, your auto insurance policy does not cover for loss of use. Therefore, if the car needs to be repaired for an extended time period, the rental car company may charge for the repairs. Another thing to keep in mind is that there is not any coverage from your personal auto policy if the rented vehicle is used for business purposes. The best way to avoid all of this is to buy the insurance the rental car company offers. Therefore, if the car was damaged while in your possession, you are not held accountable.
Can I add my teen driver to my umbrella insurance policy?
You can, and you should! Teen drivers are more at risk of accidents than experienced drivers by a substantial amount. Ensure that your assets are not at risk by covering your teen driver under your umbrella insurance policy.
Are the custom parts that I add to my Harley Davidson covered?
Typically… no. Unless you specifically add coverage for alterations and custom parts, it’s not covered by most motorcycle policies. This is something that would be worth speaking to your agent about to make sure you’re on the same page on your coverage.
If an injurious accident occurs while someone is riding on the back of a motorcycle with me, will my motorcycle insurance policy pay for their injuries as well?
There are several ways that this can be covered. Regardless of who was at fault, your insurance policy provides medical payments coverage that can be applied as long as their injuries are minor. If you’re found at fault for the incident, your liability coverage can pay the injuries as well. If you’re not responsible for the accident and the other driver doesn’t have coverage, your uninsured motorist and underinsured motorist coverage will pay as long as you have this type of coverage. Talking to your insurance agent about all of the situations you specifically want to ensure that you are covered for is crucial in finding the right motorcycle insurance for you.
Why should I consider getting an umbrella insurance policy?
An umbrella insurance policy is an additional policy that you can purchase that adds extra liability protection to your underlying policies such as homeowners, auto, and more. If you are in a situation in which you exceed the limits of your underlying policy, your umbrella will cover the remaining balance of the claim up to it’s limits. With the average 1 million umbrella policy with 2 cars and a home starting at $120 annually, anyone can and should afford to get this extra insurance.
If a neighbor’s tree falls on my house, will my homeowners insurance pay or theirs?
This depends on the details of the incident. If the tree fell as a result of a covered perilous event such as lightening or wind, then your homeowners insurance will pay for the damages. If the true or tree limb was dead, however, then your neighbor is responsible for the damage.
If water or sewage backs up in my house, will my homeowners insurance cover the damage?
Generally speaking, the damage from water and sewer backup is not covered by the typical homeowners insurance policy. However, your insurance policy can be endorsed to include this coverage to the limit that you desire.
How much life insurance do I need?
Determining how much life insurance coverage you need depends on a lot of personal, specified factors. Talking to a certified life insurance agent who can analyze your particular needs is a great way to get an idea of what life insurance plan you should be on. Contact Reed Street today to learn more about how much and what type of insurance you should have based on your specific needs.
Can more than one beneficiary be named on my life insurance policy?
Yes. Almost every life insurance agency allows you to either split the coverage amount into percentages or fixed amount for each beneficiary.
What is the difference between permanent life insurance and term life insurance?
Permanent life insurance is intended to cover you for the entirety of your life. However, certain types of permanent life insurance such as variable life and universal life might not do so. These types of policies are dependent on the performance of the cash value in your policy. Because the cash value is invested by the insurance company and is reliant on market condition, these policies may not last as long as you intended them to.
Alternatively, Term life guarantees you a specified amount of time and doesn’t contain a cash value feature. It is possible to convert a term policy into a permanent policy within a specified time range. This is stated in your policy. The nest way to decide on how much and what type of life insurance you need is to talk to a professional who can go over your individual wants and needs with you. Reed Street has plenty of representatives that could help you get a better understanding of this.