Happy New Year! Peace and Good Will to all! But, if you really want to have peace of mind, you should make a New Year’s resolution to review your insurance policies for the most common potential insurance coverage gaps and make an appointment with an insurance specialist—not just an insurance agent, but possibly a risk manager.

I was thinking about these topics on the way home with my parents from the Orange Bowl. The photo above is me between my mid-eighty-year-old parents celebrating another glorious victory of my beloved Florida Gators. On the trip back to Tampa, they discussed what all older parents should do with their children about their future. They inquired whether I may want any of their personal items. Of course, being the insurance nerd that I am, it made me think about the insurance implications of their future changes and how everybody’s personal and business lives change year after year.

For instance, have you insured all the gifts you have given or increased your policy limits for items you received? Did you add that expensive piece of jewelry to your schedule of items? Did your business purchase commercial property in another corporate name and lease it back to your operational business—and you reflected this in leases and insurance? Did you get divorced or separated? Did you buy that second dream home? Did your children go to college or move somewhere else while you still maintain (or do not) a room for them at your home with some of their “stuff?” Did your business purchase an end of the year asset for tax purposes?

Changes in residency always have insurance implications. I warned about this and other common life changes in,
Move Out and Lose Coverage—Common Property Insurance Minefields Caused By Changes of Residency.

All of these changes have implications for how we are supposed to insure, who is supposed to be named on the insurance, and the values to be insured.

So, why don’t we make a New Year’s resolution to set an appointment with a professional and experienced insurance agent or risk manager to make certain we have peace of mind that our insurance is keeping pace with our life and business?

The National Association of Insurance Commissioners suggests the same:

Make a resolution to review your policies and coverage

The start of a new year is a great time to reevaluate your insurance policies. Changing circumstances may lead to different insurance needs. Did you have a baby? Get married? Purchase a new home or car? If so, you’ll want to check whether you have the right fit in policy protection.

Take some time to talk with your agent and review your policies and see if they meet your current needs. Your agent or company can help determine whether your current policies provide adequate coverage or if you might need more or less. Even if you haven’t experienced a life changing event, you could be eligible for discounts or new insurance products may better serve your needs.

This made me think: Merlin Law Group attorney Shane Smith made the same suggestion six years ago in, New Year – It’s Time to Review Your Policies! Shane noted:

It is very likely that either you or a family member has experienced a life changing event in the past year which could result in your current insurance coverage not adequately protecting you and your family. Examples may include a change in residence, purchase of a new vehicle, getting married, having a baby, or starting a new business. Regardless of what has happened in your life, the New Year is a smart time to re-read your insurance policy to determine if any changes in insurance coverage are necessary so that you can cover yourself, your family members, your residence or your business in the event of personal injury or property damage.

Seven years ago, losses caused by cyber criminals, vandals, and extortionists may have been new, as we noted in, Industry Cannot Keep Up With Cyber Perils – Understanding Business Interruption Claim. Today, all businesses should have insurance for first-party and third-party digital claims. Have you discussed this with your insurance agent?

Insurance is a great product. Experienced and qualified insurance agents and risks managers are very important to make certain that this product works for you. Add one more resolution to make an appointment with one tomorrow. You will sleep better knowing that your insurance is truly providing you peace of mind as you move through the changes in your personal and business life.

Happy New Year! I hope you feel like I did, following my Gators’ victory. Let’s make 2020 our best year ever!

Thought For The Day

Be at war with your vices, at peace with your neighbors, and let every new year find you a better man.
―Benjamin Franklin