New Coverage Can Ease Emotional, Financial Impact of Crimes Against Family Members

October 15, 2001

Insurance is now available to help protect Colorado families from financial loss if a loved one is the victim of one of four criminal activities.

The Chubb Group of Insurance Companies has unveiled Masterpiece® Family Protection(SM), which helps to cover a broad range of expenses if the policyholder or a covered relative is the victim of a home invasion, child abduction, car jacking or stalking threat that occurs almost anywhere in the world. This first-of-its-kind insurance product is currently available to Chubb’s personal insurance customers in Colorado as well as Connecticut, Illinois and Massachusetts.

The insurance reimburses the policyholder up to specified limits for various expenses, including fees for medical and psychiatric services, reimbursement for lost wages, fees for professional security consultants and security guards, and the cost of recuperation, improving household security and temporarily relocating one’s residence.

The policy also provides a reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the responsible party. Covered relatives include one’s spouse, children, grandchildren, parents, grandparents, siblings and their children.

”Many of our policyholders and their families lead active lifestyles. The policy provides peace of mind by helping to mitigate the emotional and financial impact of one of these incidents,” said Peter Spicer, assistant vice president of Chubb & Son and new product manager for Chubb Personal Insurance. “Just listen to the nightly newscasts, and you find that these incidents happen everyday. Unfortunately, most people will think that it can’t happen to them or their loved ones.”

According to the U.S. Department of Justice, nearly 1.3 million cases of forcible or unlawful entry of residences, 1.4 million stalkings, 50,000 car jackings and between 3,200 and 4,600 non-family-related child abductions occur each year.

”The need for the coverage is quite clear and its cost–$70 to $80–is quite minimal,” said Spicer. “The question, however, is whether people will want to face the disturbing facts. After introducing the product in Colorado, Connecticut, Illinois and

Massachusetts, we hope to make it available nationwide.”

A recent nationwide survey of more than 300 people conducted by Impulse Research of Los Angeles concludes that families feel that home invasion, child abduction, car jacking and stalking represent considerable threats. Nearly two-thirds of Americans (62 percent) worry that their child may be abducted, 58 percent are concerned about car jacking and 46 percent fear that they may be stalked. In addition to the emotional issues, 78 percent of those surveyed said the expenses associated with being a victim of one of these crimes could seriously affect their finances.

According to the survey, the average cost of responding to an incident of stalking, car jacking, child abduction or home invasion is $38,000. Nine percent of respondents estimated it would cost more than $100,000.

Families are beginning to address the need for financial protection against these crimes by purchasing Masterpiece Family Protection, according to agents offering the product in the four states.

“Our clients feel more secure knowing that Masterpiece Family Protection can provide financial assistance when confronted by a very difficult and emotional situation,” said Bonnie K. Reps, account executive at the Denver office of PLI Brokerage Inc. “No one should have to worry about the financial costs when a loved one’s wellbeing is at stake. Our clients do not need to be sold on this unique package of coverages.”

Masterpiece Family Protection is just one of several innovative products offered by Chubb Personal Insurance. During the past year, for example, Chubb added coverage for certain personal Internet-related exposures, identity fraud and kidnap expense to its homeowners insurance product. Other insurance products offered by Chubb Personal Insurance cover not only fine homes but also automobiles, watercraft, fine arts, antiques and other valuable possessions as well as personal and excess liability.

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