Valentine’s Day 2023: Love & Insurance
By Michael Giusti
Valentine’s Day has all the trappings of romance — weddings, jewelry, romantic getaways … and insurance?
Each year, InsuranceQuotes.com publishes it’s Valentine’s Day: Love & Insurance guide because while insurance may not be the most romantic of all topics, protecting the ones that we love and the things that are important to us always has a place in our hearts.
So, let’s spend a few minutes examining where the worlds of insurance and love come together.
24 Karat Love – Jewelry Insurance
For at least the last century, true romance was sealed with a diamond ring. But while that ring signified a solid union, what is protecting the ring itself?
The most basic protection for wedding and engagement rings comes from a couple’s homeowner’s or renter’s insurance. The property portion of that coverage would protect the ring if it were damaged or stolen. But there are a few catches to that coverage.
First, because jewelry is easily stolen, insurers limit their exposure — with typical policies limiting coverage to about $1,500 per piece of jewelry.
For many rings, $1,500 is sufficient, but for couples who splurge, that might fall short — with jewel-encrusted engagement rings easily coming in at many times that amount.
For pricier rings, couples can buy an expansion to their homeowner’s coverage known as a floater, which assigns higher coverage to specific pieces of jewelry — at a higher premium of course.
But all of that is still after a deductible. So, if a homeowner lived in a pricy area where high deductibles were common, filing a homeowner’s claim for a stolen ring might not even make sense.
In those cases, stand-alone jewelry policies might be a better fit. There are companies that are happy to write policies only protecting a ring or other heirloom piece of jewelry. These policies tend to cover “all risks,” meaning that not only are damage and theft covered, but so is loss and mysterious disappearance — things homeowner’s policies typically wouldn’t cover.
Insurers are also happy to step in and insure the actual wedding ceremony itself through a wedding insurance policy.
Typical wedding insurance comes in both cancelation and/or liability coverage.
The cancelation coverage is in case the couple, or a significant member of the wedding party falls ill, or if there is a natural disaster or other unforeseeable event that prevents the wedding from moving forward.
It also protects the couple if the venue has a problem — such as if it is overbooked or damaged. And coverage often also steps in if key vendors have problems and can’t perform on the day of the ceremony — say a florist suddenly isn’t available.
Some policies even offer protection for damaged or stolen wedding gifts, and even wedding dresses that are destroyed in the ceremony.
The liability piece of the policy is for protecting the couple and the venue if something terrible happens during the event.
Liability protects against things like injuries to guests, or damage to the venue. They can also pick up liquor law liability and can even step in to cover liability on behalf of the vendors, like say if a DJ overloads a circuit and causes an electrical fire.
Travel insurance can be a good choice to cover the honeymoon — or even just a romantic Valentine’s Day sojourn.
Travel insurance helps recover nonrefundable prepaid deposits if a trip is either canceled or interrupted unexpectedly. These policies can step in to cover weather-related emergencies, or in case a death or illness of one of the traveling companions makes the trip impossible.
Interruptions are covered, too. So, if someone had travel insurance and missed their connecting flight because of a weather delay, the policy would help get the trip back on track.
Some even kick in if someone gets laid off of their job before the trip.
Travel policies can also cover health costs during the trip. These can be handy if the couple is traveling outside their home coverage area in the United States and would have to pay out-of-network costs if they needed medical care. But they really shine in overseas trips where U.S. health insurance rarely follows travelers.
One thing travel insurance never covers, though, is fear of travel — or cold feet for that matter. So, if someone simply changes their mind a few days before the trip, they can’t look to their travel policy to bail them out. The big exception there is cancel-for-any-reason policies, which as their name implies, allows travelers to call off the trip no questions asked.
The catch with cancel for any reason is they are more expensive to start, and their payouts are less generous. But sometimes the extra peace of mind is worth a few extra dollars.
Insurance can’t protect people from bad dates (though there was a policy that one company tried to offer to do just that a number of years ago), and they can’t protect people from divorce (though there are some policies that kick in to pay spousal or child support in some cases.)
But in at least one extreme example, there was an insurer in the United Kingdom who offered insurance to pregnant couples who were hoping for one child but ended up with twins or other multiple births. Those policies didn’t cost much, and the payday was only a few thousand pounds. But they could at least cover some extra diapers and onesies.
But beyond the things we often just can’t control, there are a lot of places in a couple’s life that insurance can protect things that matter to them.
Michael Giusti, MBA, is senior writer and analyst for InsuranceQuotes.com