If you have suffered the loss of personal property, we can help.
Personal property losses may include:
- Art and Other Possessions
Generally, these items will be covered under your homeowners’ or condo insurance policy.
A basic homeowner’s insurance policy typically values the loss at “actual cash value.” This is interpreted to mean the lesser of: the cost of repair, the cost of replacement, or the depreciated value of the property. The best insurance policies will value your losses at the “cost of replacement.”
To further clarify these different systems of valuation:
- Actual Cash Value: Assume that you have a fifteen year old dining room set which you originally purchased for $5,500, but today would cost $10,000 to buy new. Due to damage, the dining room set is a total loss and cannot be restored. In this example, the insurance company will pay you the depreciated value – perhaps $400. The insurance company’s position is that the value of the fifteen year old furniture will have fully depreciated (assuming ten years of reasonable use).
- Cost of Replacement: Using the same dining room set furniture example, the insurance company will pay $10,000 under a Cost of Replacement policy, enabling you to buy a new dining room set of like kind and quality.
Valuable items of personal property such as jewelry, artwork, guns and currency will have limited coverage. However, you may have purchased extra coverage, with a specific agreed value, for these items. For example, $32,000 for a diamond wedding ring. The advantage of having an agreed value is that the insurance company must pay this amount. There will be no haggling or negotiation over the loss.
Cars, Motor Vehicles, and Boats
Motorized vehicles are generally valued on the depreciated value. However, in unique circumstances, you may have a stated or agreed value for your automobile or watercraft. The policy will have to be reviewed carefully. We can help.
Please call us for a free consultation: 1-800-581-1434