Insurance Insights, Tough Insurance Questions

By Wallace, Tammy | American Music Teacher, October-November 2003 | Go to article overview

Insurance Insights, Tough Insurance Questions


Wallace, Tammy, American Music Teacher


Insurance policyholders are paying the price for the extreme judicial rulings during the last decade. Without citing specific court cases, it is clear many have the same underlying issue: What would a reasonable person decide if he or she had been aware of coverage options prior to a loss? The most common statement in court cases today could possibly be: "If I would have known my insurance did not cover this, I would have purchased additional coverage." This brings up many tough insurance questions that policyholders should be asking insurance agents. Many policyholders depend strictly on their insurance agents to inform them of the coverage and its exclusions. Often, policyholders will not ask additional questions.

The R.H. Clarkson Insurance Agency has been working with MTNA for nearly two years. When talking with members and potential members, our agents have consistently encouraged them to call their current insurance agent and ask about their exact coverage. It is our nature as busy professionals to not review the boring details of an insurance policy; however, those details are not so boring when we need to use our insurance. Before we play the "What if?" game, I would like to share some questions and statements we have received from MTNA members:

* Why do I need liability coverage? I have homeowners insurance.

* I teach at the school (studio/university); their insurance will cover me and my students.

* If I buy Abuse Defense coverage, then I feel like I am admitting to some act of wrong behavior.

* How can a baby grand piano be stolen?

Here is how we reply to these statements and questions:

* If you teach at home and at school, your homeowner's coverage may not cover you at school or cover you at home while providing instruction.

* The school/studio/university may only have certain types of liability insurance that only cover the students, not the instructor.

* Abuse Defense coverage pays for your defense if any accusation is made.

* A baby grand piano can be stolen with a moving van while you are on vacation.

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