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Insuring Your College Student

Finding the right insurance coverage for a college student can be challenging. Associates of Glens Falls would like to help. Here's what you need to know before your child leaves for college.

What every parent should know...
Do you have a child leaving for college soon? Sending a child off to college is a significant milestone that represents the culmination of years of planning and hard work. As you prepare for the start of the semester, you should consider how your insurance needs may change with your son or daughter away at school.

Protecting Your Student's Belongings
Prior to dropping your child off at their new home and before the last hug is given, contact your AOGF insurance agent to discuss the rules and limitations of your coverage when it comes to your son or daughter's dorm room. Many homeowners' policies consider a dorm room as an extension of your home, so items your child keeps there may be covered to some extent. However, if your child has lots of expensive electronic equipment or furniture, you may want to consider purchasing additional coverage.  If your child lives off campus, his or her possessions may not be covered by your homeowners' policy. In that case, you may want to consider renter's insurance, which typically ranges from $15 to $30 per month. Renter's Insurance will cover possessions in the student's off-campus apartment or house as well as provide liability coverage if anyone is injured in the residence.

Changing Auto Coverage
If your son or daughter moves more than 100 miles away from home to attend school and does not keep a vehicle there, your car insurance premiums could decrease by as much as 30%. You may be able to save money while still maintaining coverage for your child when he or she is home for vacation.

Keeping Your Child Healthy While On Campus
Many students can stay on their parents' health plans during college, but usually they must be full-time students, taking 12 hours or more in a semester. However, these restrictions vary greatly by state, and coverage could become even more complicated if your child is attending an out-of-state school. For example, if you have a managed care plan, you probably have geographical limits and should consider whether your child will be able to access an in-network health care provider nearby. Your student also may not be covered if injured while playing intercollegiate athletics, so be sure to check your policy and the school's policy on coverage for athletes. If you find your child does not have coverage under your plan for any reason, you have a few options. Most universities have their own health plans, but some policies have high deductibles and low coverage maximums. A few do not offer any coverage for any conditions present before entering the university, so purchase carefully. Otherwise, you may consider an individual policy for your student.

Ask Us These Insurance Questions When You Have College-Aged Children:

  • Will my child's belongings be covered if his/her dorm is subject to theft, fire or other disasters?
  • Will my child's belongings be covered if he/she lives in off-campus housing?
  • What happens if he/she gets seriously injured while at school?
  • Can I get a discount on my auto policy if my young driver is away at school and rarely uses the family car?
  • Do I have to change my auto policy if my son or daughter brings the car to school?
  • Will my intercollegiate athlete be covered under my family health plan if he or she is injured during practice or a game?
  • Does my child need to be a full-time student to be covered under my health plan?

Plan Ahead
Though it is difficult to think about, it is important to determine whether your child would be able to complete his or her degree if something happened to you. Consider buying enough Life Insurance coverage not only to replace the income you would have been earning, but also to ensure your child would have enough money to pay tuition and complete his or her education.

If you are getting ready to send a child off to college, you may want to look into adjusting your coverage. Give your agent a call to discuss the options you have. You could potentially save money on your policies and protect your child from expensive incidents while away from home.

For additional information or to ask any questions, contact your AOGF agent today. 518-793-3444.

*Courtesy of Zywave Inc. © 2009 – 2011 Zywave, Inc.
*The information, principles, suggestions and examples contained in this newsletter are general in scope and have been developed from sources believed to be reliable. This is not legal advice nor has any attempt been made to interpret any codes, laws, standards or regulations. Associates of Glens Falls, Inc. or any of its employees accepts no responsibility for the correctness or completeness of this material or its application to specific factual situations.