What is an insurance rider?

You probably know that insurance is a good thing to have. You want and need insurance to protect you from the damage to or loss of property, health insurance to protect you from expensive medical care, life insurance in the event of an untimely death, and so on.

But sometimes those policies simply aren’t enough.

If you want additional coverage beyond what is in your insurance company’s standard policy, you can purchase extra coverage, also known as a “rider,” for your specific situation.

For example, if you’ve purchased property insurance, you may have been asked if you needed additional coverage beyond what the basic policy provided. It turns out that most homeowner’s or rental insurance policies only cover certain items up to a specified amount. So, if you have expensive items that are worth more than that amount – like a valuable engagement ring or top-of-the-line computer – you may want to purchase a rider to cover the full replacement value of the ring. Loss limitations in most policies typically apply to jewelry, furs, computer equipment, business-related items and liability, recreational vehicles and more – but you can purchase riders for extended coverage.

Common auto insurance riders includes uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage, although it is also included in some basic policies because some states require it. You can also purchase riders that protect you from the loss of depreciation of a new vehicle in the event that it is totaled, or that keeps your premiums from rising in the event of an “at-fault” accident.

You can even purchase riders for life insurance policies. Available riders include accelerated death benefits, which will give you benefits before death in the event of a terminal illness; accidental death benefits, which provide increased benefits in the event cause of death was an accident; and long-term care, which will pay for long-term care should you need it.

Keep in mind that you won’t want to purchase all riders that are available. But there may be some that are worth the extra cost, and it’s good to know the option is available.

Join Our Newsletter

Get the latest personal finance tips and updates on changing lending rates. (About once a week)

We hate spam too! Your email is safe with us.