Does my homeowner’s insurance policy protect me in the case of identity theft?

With the ease that criminals can obtain our personal data without having to break into our homes, identity theft is increasing at an alarming rate.

With enough identifying information about you the individual will fraudulently assume your identity to conduct a wide range of financial crimes.  Using your identity the thief will apply for applications for loans and credit cards, make withdrawals from bank accounts, or obtain other goods or privileges.  By using an address other than yours for the bills to be sent, you may not become aware of what is happening until there is already substantial damage to your assets, credit, and reputation.

There is an endorsement available on most homeowner’s policy. One home insurer has $15,000 of coverage available (subject to a $250 deductible) to pay for expenses incurred as a result of any one identity fraud.  Such expenses include the costs for notarizing documents; certified mail sent; lost income for time taken off work to meet with law enforcement or credit agencies; loan application fees for re-applying for a loan due to lender receiving incorrect credit information; and reasonable attorney’s fees incurred to defend lawsuits brought against the insured.

Review your policy and then check with your agent at Miller Insurance Agency to confirm what coverage you may or may not have to protect you from these expenses due to an identity loss.

Some interesting statistics on Identity Theft:

$54 Billion: Total annual fraud cost of identity theft in U.S.

116 hours: the average time for a victim to resolve their case.                                                        

$1,820 to $14,340: average loss of wages when dealing with identity theft case.

$550: average expense to the victim related to their case.