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Your Go to Guide on Personal Belongings Add-on Cover

By Vikas Chandra Das
21 July 2022, 11:46 AM

Car insurance is quite necessary. It is mandatory to have a third-party car insurance policy in compliance with the law, and any full cover includes mandatory coverage and a cover for personal injury. But when you dig deep, things can seem overwhelming. 

Of course, it’s easy to identify a few basic add-ons. These may include a zero-depreciation cover, a roadside assistance cover, an NCB protect, invoice return cover, and so on. But, when it comes to losing personal belongings in auto insurance, you need more information.

For example, the Comprehensive car insurance policy attends to car damage. But does it compensate for the damage to your laptop in the car? What if your cell phone is stolen from your vehicle? Read on for the answers.

What is a Personal Belongings Add-on Cover?

When you're insuring your vehicle, does car insurance cover the theft of things in your car? If not, is there dedicated fraud insurance coverage in auto insurance? And what if the personal belongings were destroyed in the car? 

A comprehensive policy can provide this if you have extra coverage. This additional coverage comes in the form of a Personal Belongings Add-on Cover for your Comprehensive car insurance Policy.

There will be occasions where your personal belongings may be unsupervised in your vehicle. They can be stolen or destroyed by an insured vehicle, resulting in a loss to you. That's the definition of 'loss of personal possessions' in auto insurance.

What All is Included in a Personal Belongings Add-on Cover?

With this coverage in effect, the insurance will reimburse the damages sustained due to the damage or theft of your personal property from the insured vehicle in compliance with the terms and conditions of the policy.

Some insurers can provide different add-ons when it comes to this coverage. Here are the various policies that could be offered:

  • Personal Belongings Add-on Including Electronic Equipment.
  • Personal Belongings Add-on Damage Specific.
  • Personal Belongings Add-on Theft Specific.

Remember that some insurance providers can follow a mix and match approach or sell the above policies as a package. Some may not sell any cover at all. In a few instances, the add-on may be enforced, but the exclusions list may be long. We will discuss the standard exclusions of the policy shortly.

Therefore, it is of the utmost importance to read the policy text when it comes to buying such add-ons. If you have any queries, approach the Customer Service Team of the insurer before purchasing the add-on.

What are the Exclusions in a Personal Belongings Add-on Cover?

Different insurers may have various exclusions in place. It is advised to go through them before buying and making car insurance claims against the policy. If you have claimed outside the scope of the list of exclusions in the respective policy text, the insurer will not accept your claim.

Here's a list of generic auto insurance exclusions from the Personal Belongings Cover Add-on.

  • Informing the insurance provider after 30 days of the incident.
  • Loss caused by a failure to be vigilant on the part of the policyholder.
  • Loss in cases where the car doors and windows were unlocked.
  • Damage to Belongings stored in the insured car concerning trade or business.
  • Loss of data contained in electrical equipment.
  • In case the damaged or missing belongings are kept overnight in the car.
  • Lack of adequate documentation on invoices and the First Information Report (FIR).
  • Other points are listed in the Policy Terms.

What is the Claim Procedure Against the Personal Belongings Add-on Cover?

Here is the claim process to be practiced against the Personal Belongings Cover Add-on of auto insurance.

Phase 1: Please contact the insurer and elucidate the situation

Phase 2: Share the information as needed for verification

Phase 3: Follow the protocol specified by the insurance provider. For instance, file a First Information Report in the case of a theft

Phase 4: Comply with the claims team and submit the required documents

Phase 5: Collect the reimbursement

Understand that the amount obtained in settlement of the claims would reflect the depreciation expense of the damaged/lost asset in question.

For example, if the laptop was destroyed when in the car due to an accident, the insurer would offer the laptop's depreciated cost and not the value of the invoice. This calculation is done in the following table.

Asset AgeDepreciation Percent on Invoice Value
Not more than 1 year20%
Exceeding 1 year but not exceeding 2 years40%
Exceeding 2 years but not exceeding 3 years50%
Exceeding 3 years but not exceeding 4 years60%
Over 4 years80%

What are the Documents Required for the Claim Settlement Process?

Today, digital-first insurance firms are moving away from the old-school paper-based claims settlement process. To make the claims process quick and convenient, they do not ask for a long list of documents to be submitted.

Usually, you will be asked for the following documents in the event of a claim regarding a Personal Belongings Cover. Notice that the exact list of documents could be dependent on the respective claim and the policy of resolution of the insurer.

  • Claim form (digital or physical copy).
  • Copy of the FIR.
  • Invoice copies.
  • Any additional supporting documents.

Final Thoughts

Loss of Personal Belongings Cover is an add-on to the Comprehensive Auto Insurance Policy. There may be various forms of Personal Belonging Covers, such as damages, fraud, and electronic devices. They can, however, be packaged together as well. 

Personal Belongings Cover is the best option to protect your personal belongings and is becoming a necessity in this dynamic world!

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