Property Owners Seek Higher Limits to Fight Rising Claims

// December 2, 2021
Reading Time: 3 minutes

In today’s litigious climate, property owners are seeking ways to ensure they have enough coverage in place to protect themselves in the event of a claim. The industry is seeing increased claims for wrongful evictions, slip and falls and dog bites at second homes, income properties and plots of vacant land.

In some cases, an insured may not always be able to get the higher limits they desire. Many property owners rely on coverage through a state-run Fair Access to Insurance Requirements (FAIR) plan for homes in high-risk areas. The liability limits provided under these plans may be capped at $100,000 even though some cities, like Virginia Beach, require vacation rentals to have a liability limit of $1 million. For short-term rentals listed on home-sharing platforms, such as Airbnb and VRBO, primary carriers may cap the liability limits at $500,000 when property owners still need the $1 million requirement.

Obtaining excess limits for all of your properties is the best way to protect your assets. The main purpose of excess liability limits is to protect yourself and your assets from the potential financial fallout of unforeseen events (Fidelity). The best way to determine the appropriate amount of excess liability coverage you need is to assess the total value of the assets you wish to protect.

While many individuals may feel the limits of liability on their primary policy are sufficient, these real-life claim examples demonstrate the importance of excess liability coverage:

  • An insured’s caretaker visited their vacation property to check on it. They took a glass of wine out on the dock, and a loose board struck the glass and broke it. A piece of glass hit the caretaker’s eye, causing blindness. The underlying limits of $300,000 were exhausted, and $1 million in excess comprehensive personal liability coverage was paid.
  • A homeowner lived on a corner property. The stop sign at the intersection was covered by an overgrown tree, making it difficult for drivers to see the sign and stop in time. This led to a driver blowing the stop sign, causing a car accident. The homeowner’s excess comprehensive personal liability policy paid out $2 million in excess of their $1 million homeowner’s policy.

An Excess Comprehensive Personal Liability policy is a great solution for individuals who need liability limits higher than what their primary carrier can offer. USLI’s Excess Comprehensive Personal Liability product offers the following coverages and features:

  • Excess over primary limits as low as $100,000
  • Limits up to $5 million in most states
  • Owner-occupied homes, rental locations, vacant land, RV lots, and homes under construction are all eligible
  • Property managers and associations can be added as additional insureds for no charge
  • Personal injury coverage is provided if covered by the primary policy

Please contact your Personal Lines underwriter today to obtain a quote or to learn more about our Excess Liability product.

As always, thank you for your support and business.

Laura HeadshotContact Laura Detore
Underwriter – Travel | 888-523-5545, ext. 2615

Cory HeadshotWritten by Cory Bennett
December 2, 2021