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insurance experiences Re: stolen gear

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [DB]' started by toman, Aug 18, 2004.

  1. I'm interested in what kind of experiences you guys have had with insurance companies dealing with stolen gear. I recently had my plank stolen out of my house, and now I'm trying to get the insurance company to replace it. Seeing as the instrument was a completely custom job, I can place just about whatever value on it I need to to replace it; my question is where is the insurance companys offer going to come in in relation to my claimed value?
  2. Finger Blister

    Finger Blister

    Jul 8, 2003
    It depends on whether your policy specifies
    Replacement Value or Actual Cash/Market Value

    Check your Policy!

    Replacement cost of damaged or stolen property is usually the most favorable figure from your point of view, because it compensates you for the actual cost of replacing property. If your gear is stolen, a replacement cost policy will reimburse you the full cost of replacing it with new gear of like kind. The insurer will not take into consideration the fact that you ran gigged and rehearsed for the last two years, causing a considerable amount of wear and tear.

    Actual cash value (ACV), also known as Market Value, is the standard that insurance companies arguably prefer when reimbursing policyholders for their losses. Actual cash value is equal to the replacement cost minus any depreciation (ACV = replacement cost - depreciation). It represents the dollar amount you could expect to receive for the item if you sold it in the marketplace. The insurance company determines the depreciation based on a combination of objective criteria (using a formula that takes into account the category and age of the property) and subjective assessment (the insurance adjuster's visual observations of the property or a photograph of it). In the case of stolen gear, the insurance company would deduct from its replacement cost an amount for all the wear and tear it endured prior to the time it was stolen.
  3. Right. As far as I know, I'm dealing with replacement value. Since there is no 'book value' on the instrument, I need to come up with that value and have it verified by a qualified person, which is not a problem. However, I'm assuming that once I submit this figure, they're going to come back and make me a 'counter offer' of some lower amount, which obviously won't be sufficient to replace the instrument. It's my understanding that this is the reason instruments are usually appraised for insurance purposes at a higher than market value amount. it may seem a little funny, but i'm wondering how to place the value of this instrument so that I get compensated an appropriate amout, i.e. enough to get a new axe that's just as good as the one stolen from me. (Note that's not really possible, since that one had more than just $$$ value to me)
  4. Finger Blister

    Finger Blister

    Jul 8, 2003
    Sometimes it's just best to find your replacement first,
    then get reimburst for that amount.

    Now, get shopping!
  5. I wish I could, that would sure make it easier. Unfortunately, I just don't have that kind of cash laying around at the moment. So it seems I'm at the mercy of the insurance company... :(
  6. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    I have specialist musical instrument insurance for all my gear and as part of the deal, a value is specified for each piece.

    I started doing this when I first went to Jazz Summerschool, as this was recommended - based on a lot of experience from the Jazz pros who run this and act as tutors. I don't think standard home contents/general policies are going to come anywhere close to putting the kind of value and importance on an instrument that anyone who plays one would...:meh:
  7. I have gotten a statement of what it would cost to have a comparable instrument built, and it's quite optimistic. I'll be submitting my claim in the next couple days, but the company said it's going to take a while because of all the storm damage in florida right now. I'll be sure to keep the forum posted on what happens.