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Frequently Asked Questions

Below are some of our frequently asked questions. If you have any other questions or concerns, please feel free to contact us.

  1. Why should I use an Independant agent & not the toll free number on those commercials?
  2. Can I drive legally without insurance?
  3. Do I need insurance to rent a car?
  4. What is Uninsured Motorist Coverage?
  5. Can I own a home without Homeowners insurance?
  6. Is my jewelry covered if it is lost or stolen?
  7. When the tree falls, who pays?
  8. Should I buy coverage for my unlicensed ATV's?
  9. Why should I buy insurance if I am only renting?
  10. What dog breeds do Insurance companies consider "vicious"?
  11. What does "Debris Removal" actually cover?
  12. Do I really need life insurance?
Why should I use an Independant agent & not the toll free number on those commercials?

As an Independent Agency, our duty is to our clients and NOT to the insurance companies. Independent Agencies work with multiple insurance companies, instead of just one. This means that we have many options and can give you the best coverage at the best possible rate. As our customer, you can fill all of your insurance needs with just one phone call to your Independent Agent.

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Can I drive legally without insurance?
NO! Almost every state requires you to have auto liability insurance, and ALL states have financial responsibility laws. This means that even in a state that does not require liability insurance, you must have sufficient assets to pay claims if you cause an accident. If you don't have enough assets, you must purchase the state minimum amount of insurance. Georgia state minimums are:
$25,000 for bodily injury, each person
$50,000 for bodily injury, each accident
$25,000 for property damage liability

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Do I need insurance to rent a car?
When renting a car, you will need insurance. If you have adequate insurance on your own car, including comprehensive & collision, this may be enough. Before you rent a car, find out how much coverage you have on your own car. In most cases, the coverage and deductibles you have on your personal auto policy would apply to a rental, providing it is used for pleasure and not business. If you don't have comp & collision on your own car, you will not be covered if your rental car is stolen or damaged.

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What is Uninsured Motorist Coverage?
Uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage can pay for injuries to you and your passengers, and in some locations damage to your property, when there is an accident and the other driver is both legally responsible for the accident and does not have enough insurance to cover the damage they caused, or any insurance at all.  Although UM is not required in Georgia, it is relatively cheap and almost certainly guarantees you added protection in the event of an accident with an uninsured or underinsured driver.

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Can I own a home without Homeowners insurance?
You can legally own a home without homeowners insurance. But, if you have financed your home purchase with a mortgage, your lender will usually require you to get insurance coverage. If you live in a flood zone, the bank will also require you to purchase flood insurance. After your mortgage is paid off, no one will force you to buy homeowners insurance. However, it doesn't make sense to cancel your policy and risk losing what you have invested in your home.

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Is my jewelry covered if it is lost or stolen?
Homeowner policies provide limited coverage for jewelry if stolen and may not cover lost items. Be sure to check your policy for exact limits and coverage descriptions. Typically coverage for jewelry does not exceed $500. In order for your jewelry to be covered for its full value, it must be scheduled on your policy. This usually requires an appraisal. The same is true for any other expensive or priceless item. Talk to your agent about antiques, artwork, guns, collectibles, and other items that would be irreplaceable.

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When the tree falls, who pays?

Deciding who pays will depend on the condition of the tree and communication between you and your neighbor. Most Homeowners insurance policies cover damage to your fence and home from a falling tree subject to your deductible. Therefore the question of who pays will most likely involve both your home insurance company and your neighbor’s. Also, a deductible will be paid. Let’s examine three situations involving a tree falling. 

Your neighbor’s healthy tree falls on your house.

  • If the tree is truly healthy and shows no signs of disease or dead limbs, then your neighbor will not be considered negligent. Therefore your insurance company should pay to repair the damage to your house, minus your deductible. This may seem unfair since it was not your fault, but, generally this the case.

 Your healthy tree falls on your neighbor’s house.

  • In this situation your neighbor’s home insurance company should pay to repair the damage caused by your tree. Just as in the previous case, the deductible will have to be paid by the homeowner. Perhaps, you are friends with your neighbor and even though you aren't “negligent” you can offer to pay your neighbor’s deductible. Or, perhaps now is a good time (before a tree falls) to discuss this with your neighbors and decide that if this were to happen, each neighbor will pay their own deductible.

Your neighbor’s un-healthy tree falls on your house.

  • If your neighbor knew, or should have known that the tree was diseased or dead and failed to have it removed, then you may recover the damage to your home from your neighbor or your neighbor’s insurance company. The key issue; “Did you put your neighbor on notice that the tree was a hazard to you and your property?” If you had noticed that the tree was diseased or dead and notified your neighbor in writing, then your chances of collecting the full cost of repair are very good. Presented with a copy of the letter, your neighbor’s insurance company will most likely pay for the damages. However, if they are reluctant, your own insurance company will pay for the repair (less your deductible) and then attempt to collect the amount, including deductible, from your neighbor’s insurance company.

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Should I buy coverage for my unlicensed ATV's?

Because some ATV’s are not licensed for the road, you might assume insurance coverage is not needed or required, but you may be wrong. There are a few things to keep in mind:
• ATVs have a high theft rate
•Homeowner's insurance usually does not cover your ATV if you ride it off your property or if you trailer your ATV to another location.
•If you use your ATV in a state-owned or public park, ATV insurance is required.

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Why should I buy insurance if I am only renting?

Renters insurance protects your possessions and helps with living expenses in the event of a catastrophe or loss. What if someone breaks into your house and robs you? What if a pipe bursts in the apartment  above you and  floods your apartment? What if an electrical fire burns the apartment complex down? Your landlord will have insurance to cover the building, but you may have to temporarily move to a hotel and all of your personal belongings could be ruined by the damage.  The landlord's policy will not provide coverage for your belongings. Can you afford to replace everything you own?

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What dog breeds do Insurance companies consider "vicious"?
Dogs are called Man’s Best Friend, but unfortunately, there are times when they may cause you problems with your home insurance. Certain breeds of dogs are deemed unacceptable liability risks to insurance companies because of their inherent aggressiveness and unpredictable nature. These include any mix of American Pit Bull Terrier, American Staffordshire Terrier, Doberman, Rottweiller, Chow, Presa Canario, Akita, Mastiff, Boerboel, English Bull Terrier and wolf hybrid animals.

*Any dog with a prior history of biting or attacking that is established through claims records or public safety history will also be ineligible.

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What does "Debris Removal" actually cover?
Many home policies provide some coverage, "Debris Removal," for removing any debris (trees) off of covered property for a covered loss. However, if the tree is blown over in the yard, and did not fall onto anything, there is no debris removal coverage. If the tree hits a covered structure (your home, fence, etc...) there may be coverage for the expense of taking the tree off that structure and placing it on the ground. Some policies may pay up to $500.00 for the removal of the tree once it is removed from the damaged structure.

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Do I really need life insurance?
Many financial experts consider life insurance to be the cornerstone of sound financial planning. It is usually a cost-effective way to provide for your loved ones after you are gone. Life insurance is usually purchased for one or more of the following reasons:

1. Income replacement  -  If you have dependents, you need to consider what would happen to them if they no longer had your income to rely on. Proceeds from a life insurance policy can help support them.

2. Pay outstanding debts  - Life insurance can be used to pay for burial costs, credit card debts, medical expenses, college tuition, and even mortgage payments.

3. Estate Planning  -  The proceeds of a life insurance policy can be structured to pay estate taxes so that your heirs will not have to liquidate other assets.

4. Charitable contributions  -  If you have a favorite charity or organization, proceeds from your life insurance policy can be designated to go to these organizations.

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