COLUMBUS — Lieutenant Governor and Department of Insurance Director Mary Taylor advises Ohioans to make important insurance considerations before indulging in their favorite winter activities to ensure they are covered if an unfortunate incident occurs.

“Winter activities are a fun way to get outside and enjoy all Ohio has to offer,” Taylor said. “As you prepare to make plans, work with your insurance agent or insurance company to make sure you and your families are protected.”

Snow Removal at Home

Generally, your homeowner’s or renter’s policy will cover liability for injuries, should someone slip and fall on your property. Your city may have snow-removal statutes. Check with your city to see what rules apply.

Skiing, Snowboarding, Sledding, Ice Skating

Before you speed down your favorite slope or lace up your skates, check your homeowner’s or renter’s policy, as well as your health insurance, so you know what just to make sure you know what to do in case of an accident or a loss.

Generally, equipment you own will be covered by your homeowner’s or renter’s policy personal property coverage up to certain limits and subject to the policy’s deductible.

Because you may be out of town without access to your family physician or local hospital, review your emergency medical treatment requirements. Determine if you are required to seek medical treatment at a certain hospital or urgent care center, the amount of your emergency room co-pay, and if you have to visit a certain pharmacies to fill a prescription.

Snowmobiling

Physical damage to snowmobiles is not covered under typical homeowner’s, renter’s or auto insurance policies.

Your homeowner’s or renter’s insurance policy might provide liability coverage for injury or property damage due to the operation of your owned snowmobile, but this is generally limited to when you are operating the snowmobile only on your property.

If you own a snowmobile, inquire about a separate policy that provides both liability coverage and physical damage coverage.

If you are traveling and plan to rent a snowmobile, consider purchasing rental insurance or a collision damage waiver if it’s offered and you are worried about causing damage to the rented snowmobile. Check with your agent about liability protection.

Snow Plowing

If you have a plow on your truck ready to help friends or neighbors remove the snow in their driveway, your personal auto policy may cover your liability for any injury or property damage you might cause. But, before offering to help, talk with your agent to make sure you are covered.

If, however, you are using that blade to make a little extra cash this winter, your personal auto insurance policy will likely not provide coverage. You may need to consider a commercial auto policy – one that includes coverage for plowing – before committing your services for a fee.

More Information

Ohioans with insurance questions can call the Department’s consumer hotline at 800-686-1526. Information is also available by visiting www.insurance.ohio.gov. You can follow the Ohio Department of Insurance on Facebook and Twitter.