Monday, February 28, 2011

Why Homeowners' Insurance is Important

  I am currently involved in a case where an accident victim has been countersued by the responsible party.  Upon learning this, I immediately asked the client's homeowners' insurer to defend the case.  While upsetting to the client in the short term, there is now an additional lawyer in the case fighting for my client with one paid by the insurer.
  Many clients do not understand the full benefits of a homeowners' insurance policy and think it applies only to persons actually injured at their home.  Whether issued by Allstate, State Farm, or any of the other major insurers, each of these policies protects the homeowner from being sued regardless of where the injury occurs.  Of course, there are exceptions made within the policy for things like intentional acts, car accidents and so on.   But the lesson to be learned is that there is no harm in asking your insurer for help.
  Another example of this is that most homeowners' policies include "medical payments coverage" to pay the medical bills fo someone hurt at your home regardless of fault.  This lets the homeowner make the gracious gesture of offering to pay for medical bills caused by an accident that no one feels good about.  Homeowners that are proactive and offer to pay medical bills or even to get in contact with their insurer are less likely to be sued.
   You always have to play your card hand smartly.