The strange world of insurance

Saturday, 05 March 2011 09:43

The strange world of insurance: Bizarre coverage, crazy celebrity policies and the funniest excuses

If your insurer ever denies you cover for a slightly left-field policy request you could do worse than throw back to them some of the really odd requests that have been granted insurance cover.

Sure, most of the people wanting cover for some of these quotes would have had to pay a high premium, but if you don’t ask you’ll never know! Lloyds of London pride themselves on being able to offer insurance for virtually anything but even they may be hard pushed to come up with a sensible risk assessment for some of these requests!

Five of the strangest insurance coverage requests

Capturing old Lochie

A whisky company ran a competition in the 1970’s offering £1 million to any intrepid adventurer who could catch the Loch Ness monster alive. The company got so spooked that someone would actually manage it that they took out a policy insuring themselves should they have to pay out. The payout would only be valid if the monster caught was at least 20 feet in length and verified as genuine by the Natural History Museum

Alien abduction

There are a wide variety of policies insuring against abduction by aliens. Particularly popular in the USA, where more than 20,000 people have ‘alien cover’, these policies are not confined to abduction. It is possible to take out policies covering you against falling pregnant from an alien, transformation into a werewolf and even the bog standard protection against being probed by an alien.

The Immaculate Conception

Particularly popular amongst women called Mary, it is possible for a woman to insure themselves against getting pregnant in this manner. It is not as popular a policy type as alien abductions but there have still been more than a hundred of these policies taken out in the last decade.

Insuring body parts

This type of insurance coverage is more common that you might imagine and particularly popular amongst celebrities who rely on a certain part of their body for their success. Dolly Parton has insured her breasts, David Lee Roth got his semen covered, Bruce Springsteen got his voice insured and at the heart of his Riverdance fame, Michael Flatley insured his feet for a cool £25 million.

The lottery

Lloyds of London have a set of insurance policies aimed at companies to cover them if two or more of their employees strike it lucky and win more than a million. With the popularity of office lottery syndicates the policy is designed to recoup losses as a result of more than one employee winning a fortune and handing in their notice the next day.

The weirdest celebrity insurance requests

There is a wide range to choose from as our famous friends are capable of some astonishing levels of vanity and their agents and business associates are as sharp as a pin when it comes to covering potential revenue opportunities.

Keith Richards

You may think there could be any number of appropriate insurance opportunities for rock’s greatest survivor but he opted to insure his middle finger for over £1 million. Obviously this finger is pretty important to his guitar playing and that is the reason he insured it, not as some commentators have said, to make sure he can continue to tell the authorities where to go.

Heidi Klum

The German born model has insured both of her legs for a total of $2.2 million. However, her right leg is insured for $1 million and the left for $1.2 million. The reason one is apparently worth $200,000 more is that her left leg has a small scar!

David Beckham

It is perhaps not a huge surprise to see David Beckham on the list. Making money and Mr Beckham are close bedfellows so insuring against an injury that would end his football career, and for revenue earning purposes have a big effect on his sponsorship deals, is a no-brainer. But to cover him to the tune of $151 million does seem over the top.

America Ferrera

The star of US comedy show Ugly Betty was famous in the show for her prominent brace over her gnashers, even though in real-life she has a fine set of teeth. So, perhaps it is not such a surprise that her sponsor, toothpaste form, Aquafresh, insured her teeth for $10 million.

Egon Ronay

The noted restaurant and food critic, Egon Ronay, came up with an original insurance cover request, to protect his taste buds. It may seem surprising that he still has any taste buds left after the amount of rich, spicy and varied food and drink he has consumed, but in order to preserve the source of his living he did get them insured for $400,000.

Amusing excuses from the world of car insurance

And, finally, it is not only celebrities that can bring the odd and amusing to the world of insurance. Here are ten of the most amusing excuses to get out of being liable for various mishaps in the car.
"Going to work at 7am this morning I drove out of my drive straight into a bus. The bus was 5 minutes early.."

"The accident happened because I had one eye on the lorry in front, one eye on the pedestrian and the other on the car behind."

"I started to slow down but the traffic was more stationary than I thought."

The claimant had collided with a cow. The questions and answers on the claim form were – Q: What warning was given by you? A: Horn. Q: What warning was given by the other party? A: Moo.

"On approach to the traffic lights the car in front suddenly broke."

"I didn't think the speed limit applied after midnight"

"I knew the dog was possessive about the car but I would not have asked her to drive it if I had thought there was any risk."

Q: Do you engage in motorcycling, hunting or any other pastimes of a hazardous nature? A: "I Watch the Lottery Show and listen to Terry Wogan."

"The car in front hit the pedestrian but he got up so I hit him again"

"I pulled away from the side of the road, glanced at my mother-in-law and headed over the embankment."

Use the comparison tools to find the best insurance policy for you.


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