As we wrap up the wild year of 2020, it’s safe to say that very few, if any, of us are ending the year in the same circumstances as when we began. Whether you had to find a new job, sold a car because you are working from home permanently now, or added a new driver onto your policy, this is the perfect time of year to review and update your auto insurance and homeowners/renters insurance policies to make sure your needs are covered and your loved ones protected in case of an incident.
Here are some tips in terms of what types of coverages and benefits to look for and have in your insurance policies:
First and foremost, everyone should carry Uninsured/Underinsured (UM/UIM) Coverage! This coverage is in place solely to protect you and those covered under your policy in the event you are insured as a result of another driver who either (1) doesn’t have auto insurance or (2) does not carry enough liability coverage to fully compensate you for your injuries. Remember, the minimum policy amount to legally be able to drive in Colorado is only $25,000 per person, which can quickly be used if you are seriously hurt or are forced to receive medical treatment for many months. This benefit covers the insured, not the vehicle, so you are even covered if you are the passenger in someone else’s vehicle or you are hit by a car while a pedestrian. Often the increased cost for your premium is minimal compared to the additional protection UM/UIM provides.
Second, you should similarly have Medical Payments or MedPay coverage on your policy. This coverage benefits you and will help pay for your medical expenses should you get injured by another driver. Considering the high costs of ambulances, emergency rooms, and x-rays/CT scans and similar testing, this coverage provides a source of money to cover those expenses, which may make all the difference in the world if you must take time off work while recovering.
Lastly, whether you own your home or rent, you should have sufficient homeowners/renters insurance in place. This protects you if someone is injured on your property and asserts a claim against you and can even protect you when the incident happens off your property, such as if your dog bites someone else at the dog park. Having an inventory of the more valuable items in your home can also make the claims process smoother, if any of those items happen to be damaged or stolen.
Season’s Greetings and Happy New Year from the Bell & Pollock family to yours!