Cyber bullying is not just libel anymore. Victims often claim severe emotional distress and even bodily injury. In extreme cases, social media users have been blamed for another person’s death. While a homeowners policy may respond to certain instances where bodily injury is sustained, some online activities may be excluded from coverage.
It’s important to note that many homeowners policies exclude coverage if the act resulting in bodily injury was intentional. Additionally, many homeowners policies also exclude coverage even if the result wasn’t the expected outcome or the party injured wasn’t the intended target. Lastly, many policies are now listing social media exposures by name as an exclusion.
What can you do to protect your family?
1) Discuss internet safety with kids and other members of your household and supervise to ensure proper internet usage.
2) If you have a social media exposure, check with your agent to make sure personal injury is a covered peril under your homeowners insurance and/or personal umbrella policy.
3) If you don’t have a personal umbrella policy, talk to your agent about one.
The cost of insurance is always going to be a factor in choosing a plan. However, it’s important to compare homeowners and supplemental coverage products. Your agent can provide you with the best policy for your needs while also providing value by discussing policy specifics like the coverages and exclusions that impact your household.