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Covered on Campus – Protecting Your Student at College

It’s the time of year when we start sending our children off to college, and there are seemingly hundreds of details to be attended to, from class schedules to roommates to new computers to be purchased. Add in the emotion of the moment (especially if it’s the first time) and it can all be a little overwhelming. So you’re probably not thinking about insurance coverage for your child and his or her belongings, but you should be.

Let’s take a brief look at coverage issues for students in three major areas:

Property: In many cases, your homeowners’ policy will consider a dorm room as an extension of your home, so any items your child keeps there may be covered to some extent. However, if your child has expensive electronic equipment or other belongings (for example, musical instruments, which are often stored elsewhere), you might consider looking into additional coverage.

Your homeowners’ policy will typically not extend to off-campus housing, but you should check to make sure. In this case, you’ll want renter’s insurance, which is typically very inexpensive. A renter’s policy has the added benefit of providing liability coverage in case someone is injured on the premises.

Auto: You could actually save some money here. If your student is attending school at least 100 miles from home and not taking a vehicle, you might see a reduction in premium of up to 30 percent. If he or she is taking a car, make sure your coverage reflects that. Either way, check with your insurer to be certain coverage will still apply when your student is home for breaks.

Health: In many cases, parents’ health coverage will continue to cover students away at college. However, restrictions vary greatly from state to state, so be sure to check, especially if your child is headed to an out-of-state school.

If there is an issue, many colleges and universities offer some type of health plan for students. These often have high deductibles and low coverage limits, so make sure you understand exactly what you’re purchasing. A third option is an individual policy.

Regardless of the type of health coverage, if your child is an athlete you should ask specific questions about which coverage will apply in the event that he or she is injured in a practice or game.

Sending a child off to school is a big adjustment, but a little time spent in addressing these issues can shorten your list of things to worry about.

Questions about insurance coverage for your college student? Contact Consolidated Insurance.

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