COLUMBUS — Lieutenant Governor and Department of Insurance Director Mary Taylor encourages Ohioans to conduct a routine check of all insurance needs and coverage to maximize the enjoyment of summertime activities.
“Take a moment to make sure you have the right amount of insurance protection for your summertime fun,” Taylor said. “Talk with your agent and let them know about any life changes you may have experienced and whether or not your coverage is adequate for the type of activities you plan to participate, whether camping, boating or staying close to home.”
Taylor offers the following insurance information and tips:
Cars and Trucks
Whether driving around town or on a road trip, make sure your vehicle is adequately insured. Carry your vehicle insurance card, and understand what to do and what information to gather after an accident.
- If you are in an accident, remain calm. Call for an ambulance, if needed, and the proper law enforcement authorities. Ask the officer how to obtain the accident report.
- Get names, addresses, phone numbers and insurance information of those involved and note the road name and conditions.
- Take pictures of the vehicles and accident scene with your cell phone or camera.
- Report the accident to your agent or company as soon as possible.
- An accident filed with your insurer may increase your premiums at renewal.
Motorcycles and Scooters
Motorcycles and scooters are not covered by your standard auto insurance policy. You must have a separate policy that covers liability and physical damage coverage.
- If you carry seasonal coverage, check that your policy is up-to-date.
- Be sure you understand Ohio helmet laws.
- Insurance companies have separate requirements for helmets.
- Some insurance companies might offer a discount for safety courses.
All-terrain vehicles (ATVs) are not covered by a standard auto insurance policy, but your homeowner’s policy may partially cover your liability.
- Consider a separate ATV policy to make sure you are properly insured.
- Ask your agent about age restrictions, permitted drivers, discounts for taking safety courses and riding with a helmet.
Boats and Jet Skis
Small boats may be covered by a homeowner’s policy but coverage for liability risk is limited. A boat of any significant size will be excluded from your homeowners policy for both property and liability coverage.
- Consider a separate policy that covers physical damage and the appropriate liability limits.
- Personal watercrafts, such as jet skis, will likely require separate coverage.
- Ask your agent about safety course discounts, permitted operators, and the liability of towing.
Pools and Trampolines
Some companies might not insure your property if you have a trampoline or swimming pool, or a company could have policy exclusions for liability related to trampoline or pool injuries. Determine what your homeowner’s policy requires in the way of safety measures such as a fence or locked gate around a swimming pool.
- Check with your agent for rates and safety guidelines before making your purchase.
- An insurance company can deny coverage or cancel your policy for not informing them about a pool or trampoline.
- Understand damages and injuries your homeowner’s policy covers.
- Consider purchasing an umbrella policy to provide liability coverage above what your homeowner’s policy offers.
Pets are part of the family and are likely to be as active as you are during the summer. A pet health insurance policy reimburses the pet owner for covered veterinary care. Policies typically itemize covered treatments, deductibles, and lifetime or per illness maximums.
- The cost of a pet health insurance policy will vary based on the amount of coverage, the type of coverage, the species and age of the pet, and even what breed of animal.
- Ask about pre-existing conditions and review the policy to see if they are covered.
- Pet injury coverage is a new type of coverage that may be part of your auto insurance policy. It covers the treatment of a pet injured in a car accident up to a set limit.
- If the policy requires you to use a specific network of vets, make sure there’s a vet in your area or that your family vet is in the network.
If you have questions about insurance, call the Department’s consumer hotline at 1-800-686-1526 or visit www.insurance.ohio.gov.