The majority of us have insurance of one kind or another – auto insurance, life insurance, home insurance, etc. For the most part, having insurance gives us a bit of financial security in the event of something tragic occurring, like a car wreck, or a tornado destroying the roof of your house.
However, some of us are concerned with tragedies that…well, are a bit out of the ordinary. In these circumstances, folks will need insurance that you won’t normally find in your insurance company’s marketed portfolio. For their part, insurance companies are willing to insure almost anything – especially if they feel that there is an unlikely chance of them ever having to pay out. With this in mind, here are the top 10 most unusual insurance polices.
10. Body Parts
Insuring body parts is not exactly a new phenomenon, with the practice going back as far as the early 1900’s. Still, it’s a bit out there for average folks. But the rich and famous are anything but normal, with a love of themselves that takes narcissism to new levels. Where our reality has a set of norms that we operate within, the rich and famous have completely different standards and needs. This is definitely the case with their insurance choices. Take Jennifer Lopez, who insured that amazing rear end of hers. I can’t imagine what she thought was ever going to happen to it.
If you think that’s far out, consider pro football player Troy Polamalu (safety for the Pittsburgh Steelers). This pro bowl player has his flowing locks of black hair insured for $1 million. That’s just the icing on the cake; how about America Ferrera, the young lady who played the lead role in the show Ugly Betty? This young actress reportedly had her SMILE insured for $10 million. Wow. Of course, there are the run-of-the-mill body parts that are commonly insured by the well-to-do; Heidi Klum’s legs, for example, is insured for $2.2 million. But if you think Heidi’s legs are valuable – then how about the coverage that Mariah Carey has for her gams? The pop star songstress has a $1 BILLION insurance policy for her legs! There are even a few cases of folks who have had their noses insured. For some reason, the opening monologue from the TV show The Six Million Dollar Man is echoing in my head – “We can build him stronger, faster…”
9. Love Insurance
Guys, this is a must-have insurance policy that you may never have heard of, but that you should run out and get once you read this. In the present case, a photographer decided to take out this type of policy, in case the model he was filming got married. Apparently, she ended up doing so, and one assumes that she no longer modeled for him as a result of doing so, and the policy helped him recoup his losses. A little unusual, but OK.
But think of the other potential uses here. Say your lady friend decides to switch up and go all psycho. It’s hard to love a crazy woman; that’s a lot of pain and suffering (not to mention all the dinners, flowers and other gifts you have showered her with). With this insurance, we could minimize the financial impact of a relationship gone wrong. I mentioned this to my wife and, for some reason, she gave me a very withering look of disdain. Nevertheless, the possibilities with this one are endless…
8. Pet Insurance
I love my dog. He’s my best friend and he’s incredibly cute, loyal, fun, and everything else you would expect of a faithful canine companion. I do not, however, have any insurance on him. If the poor fellow happens to take a turn for the worse – well…the Humane Society always have lots of puppies looking for a new home. Apparently, some folks do not agree with this approach, and have taken the opportunity to insure their pets. And I’m not just talking about man’s best friend or Foofoo the cat. I’m talking every variety of pet you can imagine – from frogs to fish.
Granted, I suppose that in some cases – perhaps a rare breed of animal, for example – that there can be a significant expense attached, and you want to be prepared if something tragic happens. At the other end of the spectrum, some folks will spare no expense when it comes to the medical care an animal may need, necessitating some kind of pet health insurance for such an occasion. But let’s face it – if my dog has cancer, and it’s going to cost me $10,000 or more to treat him, then it’s off to that great bowl of leftover steak in the sky for him.
7. Improbable Insurance
I wasn’t really sure what to title this type of insurance. For certain, I had never heard of it. Lloyd’s of London (infamous for taking on all kinds of unusual policies) offers coverage for the improbable. Mainly dealing with births, you can take out coverage against the odds of your wife (or significant other) giving birth to more that the expected number of children. After all, if you are expecting twins and, all of a sudden, you are presented with quintuplets, your living expenses have just significantly increased. This insurance will help stem the initial costs of such an improbable occurrence. One instance of this was a couple who had this insurance, and subsequently collected payment, when they unexpectedly had twins. The couple renewed their insurance when the wife became pregnant again, and she promptly delivered another set of twins!
But the fun doesn’t stop with trying to pin how many children will exit the womb. Lloyd’s also offers coverage to employers against two or more of its employees winning the lottery, and deciding that there’s no reason to keep working now that they’re millionaires. Lloyd’s even wrote a policy against the possibility of the capture of the Loch Ness Monster for the whiskey-producing company, Cutty Sark, who were running a promotion for the capture of the creature. I wonder what the odds were for that?
6. Flight Insurance
This might not be exactly unusual, but it still falls into the “really?” category. Essentially, this type of policy will insure one if they are injured or killed in some sort accident involving flight craft (presumably this would mean planes, helicopters, balloons, gliders, and the like). Two things come to mind. First, the odds of actually dying in a plane crash are almost nil. Yes, it does happen, but at such an infinitesimal rate when compared to almost any other mode of transportation. In fact, you have more of a chance of getting hurt walking to the plane, than you do sitting in the plane. Secondly, why would you want to limit life or injury to just what may happen on a plane? You could just as easily be covered under your normal life and health insurance. Finally, if you are really that worried something tragic will happen to you on a plane – then take a bus or a train. Unless, of course, you have concerns about that as well!
5. Asteroid/Meteor Insurance
I remember watching the movie Meteor when I was a kid. It was all about this giant asteroid that was going to strike the Earth, and the world’s superpowers (namely the U.S. and the Soviet Union) were the only nations that could stop it by, utilizing their secret space-based missile systems. For a 12-year-old kid, that was pretty harrowing stuff. Even today, the occasional news show will do a story on the odds of an asteroid striking the Earth. Yes, it’s pretty scary stuff. And because it is, in fact, possible that such an incident could occur (some scientists say probable), there are insurers that will provide coverage for those folks who would like to play it safe.
Here’s the thing. If a large asteroid strikes the planet, there probably isn’t going to be any insurance company left to pay out any coverage, much less anyone left in any shape to collect. Of course, there could be a meteor strike that doesn’t involve the apocalyptic destruction of the entire world. In such a case, then this type of insurance may indeed be some use to the survivors.
4. Superstar Employee Insurance
This one is pretty neat. Every place of business has that one star employee who works circles around everyone else around them. These are the people that keep the business running and profitable. Losing these key people can be catastrophic and difficult to replace. To prevent (or at least minimize) the potential bottom-line damage from the loss of your superstar employee, some companies are turning to star employee insurance coverage. What better way to protect the assets of your business than to insure those that are most valuable – the people. Of course, this could equally be referred to as “brown nose” insurance as well. Who says that we are failing to place a value on human life?
3. Supernatural Attack Insurance
If you watch enough television, movies, or read enough fiction, you are probably convinced that such creatures as vampires, werewolves, and other assorted monsters actually exist. For certain, there are a multitude of people that believe in ghosts and demons. Where there is belief, there is also insurance! If you really believe that a ghost or vampire may cause your demise, then there are insurance providers that will issue you a policy against such a misfortune. To collect, all your survivors have to do is show proof that you were mauled by a ghost (or whatever), and the funds will be theirs!
Simple enough, and the premiums vary according to carrier. Of course, these days, it seems that you are more likely to actually fall in love with a vampire or werewolf, as opposed to being hurt or killed by one. So, perhaps the love insurance is a better bet. Plus, ghosts only make lights flicker and move objects mysteriously around the room. Still, you never know when a supernatural entity will go rogue, so it’s probably best to be covered.
Also included in this category is alien abduction insurance. Yep, if you happen to be one of those folks that are apt to get absconded by the Slime Creatures From Outer Space, then this is the coverage for you. The Saint Lawrence Agency even has an online application for the convenience of new applicants. Another European provider has reported selling over 30,000 such policies. This is understandable, as aliens are much more likely to nab a European than anyone else in the world.
2. Wedding Insurance
There’s an ongoing debate in my home about whether or not wedding insurance is “unusual” or not. I say it is, pointing out to my wife that I’ve been married twice, and she has been married three times, and neither one of us has had (or even heard of) wedding insurance. Suffice to say that I won that argument! Nevertheless, with the price of weddings skyrocketing – especially among the rich and famous – one can put forth a valid point that such insurance is not only not unusual, but necessary. If you are paying tens of thousands of dollars (or more) for a wedding event, then you probably want a bit of protection in case something goes horribly wrong (like a flash flood or a rampaging mother-in-law).
According to the Fireman’s Fund, which carries a wedding insurance plan, such coverage only covers those expenses that are non-refundable (meaning that it doesn’t include losing the bride or groom). So, if you’re getting married on the beach and, for example, a tsunami hits – you can recoup the cost of the ceremony. That’s cool. But what if you really do lose the bride or groom, a la Runaway Bride? No problem! The Fireman’s Fund policy has an additional policy with what is called “change of heart” coverage. Yes indeed, if your bride to be (or groom to be) leaves you at the altar, you won’t have to foot the cost for cold feet. Additionally, the policy also covers any counseling you will need to overcome the grief of being embarrassed in front of all your family and friends.
1. Immaculate Conception Insurance
I am not kidding. There were some sisters who were actually paying premiums on a policy that would have covered the cost associated with giving birth to the second incarnation of Jesus Christ. According to a spokesman for the firm that provided the coverage, the sisters wanted to be able to afford raising Christ, in the event one of them immaculately conceived. Of course, the company says that they had no intentions of offending anyone, and have since rescinded the coverage due to numerous complaints.
I honestly was left speechless (or typeless) with this one. On the one hand, if you are religious and believe in the tenants that predict the return of Christ, and that you could possibly be the one chosen by God to give birth to the Son of Man, then I guess this type of insurance makes sense. Still, I would think that God would make sure that you are going to be provided for, if He is going to appoint you as the mother of His son. I really don’t think you are going to have too many financial worries once word got out. But, I’ve been wrong before (as my wife continually reminds me), so one supposes it doesn’t hurt to be safe and get some insurance.