Recent Changes in No-Fault Statutory Accident Benefits
The author, who claims to be a lawyer, finds that the renewal paperwork sent to him from his car insurance carrier, although lengthy, is not informative about these new changes.
The author explains that the insurance company provides information about the cost of the changed coverage, which turns out to be less than his former coverage, but does not explain why.
He proceeds to call his broker for more information but after finding the conversation also uninformative, he agrees to continue his former coverage and pay the increased premium.
Although stating that he, "took the easy way out" by just opting for his previous coverage, he instructs his audience to talk to their brokers to truly understand their policies in regards to the recent changes.
He encourages readers to ask specific questions about each benefit and what the cost is for upgrading.
He also suggests that when reviewing renewal options, that readers should take into account if the benefit they are paying for would really be sufficient in the event it is needed.
He uses the no-fault income replacement benefit as an example and guides his audience to assess that benefit with the mindset that they would have to use it if they were out of work for an extended period of time and to determine if the benefit would be sufficient to meet their needs or determine if it is worth the money to upgrade.
He continues to explain that people need to think about whether or not they are the sole earner in the family, the availability of disability insurances, and whether or not they have a substantial emergency-fund or savings account in place.
The author explains that insurance agents have an obligation to provide each of their customers with a proper explanation about the coverage options that are available to the customer.
They also have the duty to explain to each client what coverage is required.
However, the author feels that most insurance agents do not satisfactorily meet these duties and asks his audience to consider whether or not their insurance agents have done so.
He poses a scenario about considering policy limits.
He explains that although he has a one million dollar policy limit, many lawsuits result in awards of over one million dollars.
His assumption is that most insurance agents have not discussed this scenario with their clients and poses the question to his audience.
He closes his article by asking his readers to imagine worst case scenarios to determine if their policies are sufficient like whether or not they'd want to risk losing their homes or have their wages garnished due to an at-fault accident where the other driver or passengers have sustained serious injuries.
To prevent worst case scenarios, he suggests reading insurance policies closely and making brokers and agents work for their money by asking the specific questions about their policies and coverage.