5 Unusual Insurance Situations: Strange Claims & Novel Coverages

Oct 3, 2022 | Your Policy

5 Unusual Insurance Situations: Strange Claims & Novel Coverages

There are so many reasons to file an insurance claim. Maybe you got into a fender-bender with another driver and used your coverage to receive compensation for repairs at an auto shop. Or perhaps your home was hit by severe weather and damaged a wall or even your personal property, so you made a claim to help cover the damages.

With that said, there are occasions that are way less frequent, like when you’d file a claim due to… coconuts and monkeys!? Some of us might go our entire life without encountering one of these situations, but not everyone is that lucky.

So without further ado, here are the most unusual insurance claims and coverage in history.

Quit monkeying around

If you travel a lot, you may, somehow, encounter an aggressive monkey. In fact, monkeys can quickly grab personal belongings and make off with them before you realize what happened.

Here are two(!) incidents that monkeys have gotten away with and how the insurance companies handled them: 

  • During their trip to Bali, a couple stopped at a temple. Unfortunately for them, a monkey happened to steal their bag. After trying to corner the monkey at a cliff’s edge and trying to do a classic food-for-bag exchange, the alarmed monkey threw the bag over the cliff. The insurance company covered the bag and everything inside.
  • A British person filed a claim after a monkey ran away with his laptop. The man wanted the entire cost of his vacation covered, but his insurance company only offered to pay for the laptop. 

The next time you come across a monkey, beware!

Double your coverage

Everybody knows having a child is very costly. A lot of money must be spent between food, daycare, babysitting, diapers, education, and so much more. Having twins literally doubles many of those costs.

Some agencies recognized these growing pains and offer Newborn Twins Insurance. The plan provides coverage for twins who wouldn’t otherwise qualify for U.S.-based medical insurance as non-residents. 

Furthermore, when those twins are old enough to drive, don’t try to cut corners. In another surprising insurance story, a family only bought insurance for one of their 18-year-old daughters. Their reasoning: they went to the same school and shared a car, so they could both pretend to be the insured driver. Unfortunately, it is fraudulent and opens up the potential for complicated situations should either driver get in an accident.

Watch out for coconuts!

Did you know? there’s actually an entire “death by coconut” Wikipedia page. While coconuts can fall from trees and cause serious injury, their fatality rate isn’t very high. Still, it’s a possible risk, and some insurance companies continue to perpetuate the myth that coconut injuries are “ten times as likely as shark attacks”.

Though he didn’t technically file an insurance claim himself, a police officer in Hawaii received $39,000 in damages after a coconut fell on his head. He was removing fronds from a public sidewalk, and the property owner was sued for failing to maintain the trees.

Be kind to your pets

Veterinary Pet Insurance offers an annual Hambone Award for the most outrageous pet insurance claim it receives in a given year. The 2012 award might take the cake (or bone) with a handful of head-scratching scenarios.

First, there’s Bayley, the Labrador puppy, who was having a fun time playing with other animals when they suddenly crashed into a 55-pound aquarium full of sea turtles. The dog needed surgical staples to treat a two-inch gash on the chest.

Meanwhile, Peanut, a dachshund-Jack Russell terrier mix, chased a skunk under the family deck. If you’ve ever owned a dachshund, you know they love to burrow. Unfortunately, Peanut got caught under the deck, and rescue workers had to destroy the family deck to find her, eventually discovering a tiny paw in the dirt. Peanut was understandably distressed but luckily recovered.

Don’t think dogs are the only culprits in insurance claims, either. A pig from Las Vegas named Crispy Bacon knocked over an entire table of pills while her owners were at work. The pig overdosed on medication, including ibuprofen and beta-blockers. Crispy spent three days dealing with drug toxicity but thankfully survived the incident.

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