The Checkout

Educate Yourself with Insure U

I don't know about you, but I think dealing with insurance issues--trying to select the right policy, whether it's life or health insurance, auto or home protection--is almost as enjoyable as filing my taxes.

But the National Association of Insurance Commissioners is trying to make things a lot easier with its new educational Web site, Insure U. The Web site is jam-packed with information and tons of good tips. Better still, it's organized in such a way to make the education and decision-making process simpler and less daunting. First, you select your appropriate age group (young singles, young families, established families and empty nesters/seniors) and then the appropriate category that you want to learn about: auto, home, life and health. That makes it easy for you to focus on your particular needs; no need to scroll through lots of information you don't care about.

Here's just a sampling of some of the tips:

For young singles considering auto insurance: "Taking a defensive driving course may help lower your premiums."

For young families weighing life insurance: "In determining the amount of life insurance to purchase, make sure to take into account your full childcare costs -- especially for children under 5 years old and for kids with special needs. Take the time to estimate these costs carefully, and factor them into your decision-making process."

For established families reviewing their homeowners policy: "If you have a child about to go away to college who will be living in a dorm or apartment, be sure to check your homeowners policy to see if their possessions will be covered. In many -- if not most -- cases, they will not be covered under your policy, and you may want to consider purchasing separate coverage."

For empty nesters/seniors auto coverage: "As a mature driver (typically age 55 - 70), you may be eligible for discounts. After age 70, the incidence of serious accidents escalates significantly, so the discounts might cease."

Insure U also has online quizzes to test your knowledge. Trust me, they're hard--but thankfully, they also help you learn from your mistakes.

By  |  April 4, 2006; 9:00 AM ET Consumer Tips
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Good information, although I already found one error in their quiz. For the question "Your newborn is automatically covered under your health insurance plan when he/she is born? True/False", they said the correct answer was false, but when my daughter was born we did not have to register her for neonatal care, that was automatically covered. We did eventually give our insurer her SSN when we received one, but her neonatal care was covered on my wife's insurance until we added her to the policy. Picky? Maybe, but it's still wrong on its face. It should have said "After your newborn baby leaves the hospital, you will need to tell your insurer to add them to your policy for them to continue to be covered. True/False"

Posted by: The Cosmic Avenger | April 4, 2006 11:34 AM

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