Are You Protected?

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insurance

iStock/RobertCrum

Life is busy, and sometimes it’s too busy. Today’s world offers so many more activities for people and children to be involved in. However, that means it has become easier to overlook the details of making sure the most important things in life are protected and that we have a solid plan to guard against life’s contingencies.

I’ll start with asset protection: autos, property and financial accounts. One way to guard these necessities is by having adequate liability protection. Liability insurance products protect against negligence – causing bodily injury to someone or damaging the property of others through accidental acts. State laws set the minimum limit requirement for automobile insurance; property package policies and stand-alone liability policies have minimum coverage levels. Most individuals make their selection based on state requirements or getting the coverage for the lowest premium possible. Not having adequate liability coverage in an accident where it is determined that you were at fault or negligent could cost you dearly.

Since I live and work in a highly populated area of North Carolina, let me use an example of a common, everyday occurrence: an automobile accident. North Carolina has minimum state auto liability limits of $30,000/$60,000/$25,000. These numbers mean that if you are at fault in an auto accident and you have the minimum limits, your insurance company will pay up to $30,000 for any one person injured in the auto accident, up to $60,000 maximum for multiple persons injured, and $25,000 maximum for the vehicle or vehicles damaged. If you were to fail to stop at a stoplight and collide with a brand-new vehicle that has multiple occupancies, totaling the vehicle you hit and sending multiple people to the hospital with serious injuries could result in these limits being exceeded. If this were the case, you would owe any additional amounts due to the injured persons and any additional amount for the vehicle, putting your personal assets in jeopardy.

As an insurance professional, I recommend that you do not make insurance all about the premium – look to get the best protection for the least cost. Take the time to add up the value of your assets, as this is all that you stand to lose as a result of a negligent act on your part. That number represents the minimum level of liability limits you should carry on your insurance policies. If you also take into account future earnings potential and the probability of accumulating additional assets, you should strongly consider choosing higher limits. For even more protection, an umbrella policy can allow for an additional layer of protection.

A local Farm Bureau is available to answer any questions you may have as well as provide more detailed information concerning your liability insurance needs.

–Allan Williams

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