A personal umbrella policy helps protect you as well as the members of your household if you are found liable for a covered incident. This typically includes your spouse, dependents and any other relatives living with you.
An umbrella insurance policy offers optional liability protection beyond what your auto and homeowners insurance policies cover.
Coverage from a personal umbrella policy typically extends beyond incidents at your home, even if you are traveling outside of the country. For example, if your car slides on the ice and causes damage to another vehicle, your umbrella policy will likely cover damage that exceeds your auto policy's limits (within the stated limits of your umbrella insurance coverage).
Your umbrella policy may also help provide protection for something not covered by your home or auto policy. For instance, if your husband rents a snowmobile while on a winter getaway, and is involved in an accident that results in property damage and physical injury to another person, your umbrella policy may help pay for the costs or repairs and medical bills of the injured individual, even if you do not have recreational vehicle insurance.
Umbrella insurance protection may also extend beyond physical damage, providing financial help (within stated limits) if you're sued for libel or slander. So if your teenager's strong opinion about a business on social media results in a lawsuit, an umbrella policy will likely help cover legal fees and, if necessary, pay for fines or damages.
Keep in mind that not everything is covered by a personal umbrella policy, regardless of whether it is in or out of your home. Your personal belongings and business, even if it is run out of your home, will most likely not be covered. Talk to your agent to be sure exactly who and what your umbrella policy covers, and ask if there is any additional coverage you need to consider.
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Almost anyone may benefit from a personal umbrella policy, regardless of income or assets, because accidents can happen to anyone and high costs can result. Suppose a guest is injured in your swimming pool or while playing with your children on a swing set, you cause a car accident that results in injuries to another person or you’re sued for alleged defamation after you post a negative online review. An umbrella policy may help prevent you from paying out-of-pocket for costly medical or legal bills if you’re found responsible in situations such as these.
Or suppose, for instance, that you have a backyard swimming pool or a motorcycle. Certain lifestyle factors can come with additional responsibilities — and potential liabilities if you don’t have sufficient protection in place. An agent can help you decide if a policy is right for you.
Personal umbrella policies typically offer at least $1 million in liability coverage. They are usually available in increments of $1 million, up to $5 million. Your agent can help you decide how much coverage is right for you.
A personal umbrella policy may extend to other members of the policyholder’s household, such as a spouse or children. Some exclusions may apply, though. Be sure to read your policy or reach out to your agent to learn which members of your household may qualify for umbrella protection.
Anyone, regardless of whether they own or rent a home, may face a liability claim. The extra liability protection provided by a personal umbrella policy may help protect renters in the event that they are found legally liable for someone else’s loss, such as medical bills or property damages. Not all insurers offer umbrella policies for renters, though. Your agent can explain what liability coverages are available to you.