Tuesday, 31 January 2012

Donate Wisely

Before I start this post I just want to tell those who do not know me that I have many years experience in the Insurance Industry, as a claims adjuster for a Travel Insurance company and for ICBC, which is our provincial Automobile Insurer.  I know how to read Insurance Policies and I know what coverage is provided.  In our province you have the right to sue another party if they cause injury to you or your property, but in most cases the insurance company can settle this without the need to go to court.

Ok so my advice today is "Be Careful who you donate money to".  This comes to mind because of stories in the media that are so commonly asking you to donate to a family that has had a recent tragedy.  Before you send money you should know what kind of Insurance they have.

  • There was the death of Sarah Burke, (very sad) donations pour in to help cover her medical costs, first estimated to be $500,000.  Then the costs were lowered to $200,000, as that amount was reached in donations, the media then tells us that Sarah's sponsor was going to cover all the costs anyway. The sponsor was talking to the family offering support, choosing not to go through the media.  So where does that $200,000 in donations go?  Hopefully to a scholarship or something good, but is that where you wanted your donation to go?
  • Now there is Sheila Nabb's family doing fundraisers (again very sad), but we know she had Travel Medical Insurance.  The air ambulance to get her home would have been paid by the Travel Insurance company to mitigate their loss.  So donations are probably going to help the young couple support themselves while they are not working, I assume?  Just check before you donate.
  • Last weekend a limo driver was killed in a car accident on the sea to sky highway.  The next day the media announces the place to send donations to.   This one really makes we wonder why?  The Driver will be covered by ICBC (mandatory in BC),  and we should ask, did he have life insurance?  ICBC will provide death benefits to the family, they have the right to sue the other driver, so ICBC will pay for the loss of life based on what a court would order to be paid.  So ask where is the donation going before you make one.
These are just a few examples, It is just getting so common now I don't want you to be taken.  Donate wisely!

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