Editor: Turning of calendar good time to check your insurance coverage

Jan. 13, 2013 @ 11:29 PM

The change of the calendar makes for a good time it took over and evaluate your insurance coverage. The National Association of Insurance Commissioners offers these tips and reminders to help with your review.

Homeowners/renter’s insurance

While the decorations are out of storage, take some photos or video of your belongings. Make note of any antique items and their value so you can ensure that they are properly covered. If you are starting a home inventory from scratch, the NAIC’s free smartphone app, myHOME Scr.APP.book, can help.

Remember to add your Christmas gifts to your home inventory, too. Include as many details as you can and take a photo of each item. You may need special coverage, so be sure to call your agent.

Auto insurance

To make sure you are winter-ready, check your auto insurance policy. Make sure your coverage is appropriate for your life situation. Liability is the part of the policy that pays for any injury or damage if you cause an accident. If your liability insurance is too low, it is possible that you could be sued for any damages above your liability limits.

Also take a look at your deductibles for comprehensive and collision coverage. This is the amount you will pay if your car is damaged or totaled without fault of another driver.

Raising or lowering this amount can affect your premium.

Health insurance

Many families recently went through the open enrollment process for their health insurance at work or Medicare Open Enrollment, which means you may have new insurance cards and paperwork coming in the mail. It is a good idea to get all this information together before winter illness or accidents happen.

Make sure to check your provider lists to verify visits to your doctor and any specialists are still covered by your policy, because in-network or preferred provider lists change from year to year. Also read through your documents and make note of your copays for in-network and out-of-network providers, so you are not surprised later.

When you’re planning a vacation away from home, check with your insurance carrier to identify urgent care centers and hospitals that accept your insurance coverage near your destination and along the way.

Be sure to ask your carrier about applicable co-pays and deductibles if care is needed.

You don’t think much about insurance until you need it. When that time comes, it’s important that you have the coverage you need and expected.