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Who cares if the guy mowing my lawn isn't insured, injuries are his problem, not mine. Right?

You should carry adequate home liability insurance because lawsuits are almost as common as car accidents. Do you find that you struggle to resist the lure of a cheap price when presented with bids for contracted work? Unfortunately, the lowest bids often come from unlicensed and uninsured contractors such as landscape companies or handymen.

The importance of liability insurance for homeowners

You should care if the person mowing your lawn is not insured, especially if you do not have adequate homeowner's insurance. Whenever you hire someone to perform a service in or around your house, including a teenage babysitter or your neighbor's kid who wants to mow your lawn, you open the door to a potential legal headache should that person be injured. Depending upon the circumstances, you might be financially liable for any injury or resulting disability.

What does homeowner's liability insurance cover?

Liability coverage is standard on all homeowner's policies, and there is no extra cost for basic limits. However, you can raise the limits if you are willing to pay an extra premium. If you are in the habit of hiring uninsured workers, you should consider increasing your liability coverage.

Most basic liability insurance for homeowners includes:

  • Legal representation if you are sued.

  • Payment for any legal judgment against you, subject to the terms, conditions and limits of coverage purchased.

  • Payment for accidents that happen off your property. Examples include hitting a fellow golfer with your ball and causing serious injury, having your dog run off your property and bite someone, or a rock flying through the air and breaking a neighbor's window while you or an uninsured individual is mowing your lawn.

Never assume that your homeowner's liability insurance is adequate for all circumstances without checking your coverage. You can purchase an umbrella policy to supplement your homeowner's insurance which gives you additional protection.

Dangers of lawn mowing

Flying debris caused by lawn mowers is actually a common occurrence and not just a freak accident. Other dangers include riding mowers rolling over on a hill or cuts from sharp blades, including accidental limb amputations. If you think that personal injury of this nature is “one in a million,” think again. Insurance claims can include not only medical care but also property loss and potential worker's compensation.

Check your homeowner's liability insurance

Hiring someone to mow your lawn might seem to be your cheapest alternative other than doing the job yourself, but is it really worth the risk? If you aren't adequately covered for liability, hiring cheap labor can turn into a costly mistake. Some policies require that all contracted work be performed by licensed contractors and will not cover you should there be an accident. Your initial savings will be minuscule compared with the alternative costs of a lawsuit without any help from your insurance company.

There are many more home insurance coverage enhancements Safety offers. Check out our products for more information on our endorsements.

Please contact your Independent Agent if you have any questions on coverage.

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