lightning strike

10 Things You Didn’t Know Insurance Could Cover

When thinking about the worse-case scenarios your insurance is designed to protect, it’s easy to let your imagination run wild with what-ifs.

What if the next big storm causes a long-term power outage?

What if someone breaks into your kid’s dorm room?

And (for the biggest overthinkers) what if a plane crashes into your house?

Some situations may be more extreme than others, but it’s normal to wonder if insurance would help if they ever were to happen.

Insurance policies aren’t exactly written in layman’s terms. Your insurance agent can show you coverages that may be hiding in the details.  

Here are 10 of the more “unusual” things your auto, homeowners or renters policies may cover, including a few you might not have even thought of.  

For all your insurance needs, AAA has you covered.

Lightning Strikes

Lightning strikes caused more than $2.1 billion in insured losses in 2020, according to the Insurance Information Institute. If your home is partially or entirely destroyed by lightning-caused fire, the damage may be covered by a homeowners policy. Electronic equipment such as computers, televisions and refrigerators that are damaged by lightning strikes could also be covered. Lightning also strikes autos, causing fires and damage to electrical systems, both of which may be covered by your comprehensive policy (subject to deductible).

Identity Theft

Millions of people are victims of identity theft every year. With an optional endorsement on your policy, your insurance may cover identity theft expenses up to a predetermined limit. These expenses may include reasonable attorney fees and earnings lost due to time taken off work to resolve the issue.

Safeguard your identity with ProtectMyID from AAA and Experian.

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Spoiled Food

If an unexpected power outage occurs, food that spoils in your freezer and refrigerator may be covered under your homeowners policy, but the amount will likely vary from state to state. Some carriers require this coverage.

Student Possessions

If your children are students and live in a college dorm, their possessions may be covered by your homeowners or renters insurance policy. However, an off-campus apartment might not be covered; check with your agent about the specifics of your policy before your student heads off to school.

Here’s what else college students should know about insurance.

Dog Bites

Dog bites and other dog-related injury claims account for more than a third of liability claim dollars, according to the Insurance Information Institute. Your homeowners or renters policy may cover dog-bite liability expenses up to the liability limits. However, dog bite claims from dogs with prior bite history and/or breeds that are classified as vicious may be excluded in some policies.

Read more about how pets are covered by home and auto insurance.

how do potholes form

Pothole Damage

If you have collision coverage, damage to your car from hitting a pothole may be covered, subject to deductible. Collision coverage is typically optional, so be sure to contact your insurance agent to ensure you have the coverage you need.

Did you know? AAA Tire & Wheel Program offers protection for wheel damages, dings, lost keys and more.

Tombstones/Grave Markers

Your homeowners policy may cover vandalism or damage to tombstones or grave markers, which are considered to be personal valuables.

Lost Wages

If available in your state, Personal Injury Protection (PIP) on your auto insurance policy can be used to recover a portion of lost wages, if you’re involved in an auto accident injury that causes you to miss work.


While rare, riots do happen. A homeowners or renters policy may cover damage to your home and possessions caused by rioting. If you have comprehensive auto insurance, damage to your car may be covered as well. Deductible may apply.

Aircraft Crashes Into Your House

Although the chances of it happening are slim, aircraft do occasionally crash into homes and the resulting damage may be covered.

Contact a AAA insurance agent to find out more about your insurance options and what discounts you might be eligible for.

2 Thoughts on “10 Things You Didn’t Know Insurance Could Cover

  1. Your comment about off-campus living not being covered by homeowners’ insurance is incorrect. It’s not covered on the parent’s renters’ insurance, and in that case, you do need separate policies.

    I will add that my student’s evacuation costs from New Orleans last year were covered under their renter’s policy for the off-campus apartment there.

    1. Hi Patrick, thanks for your comment! Whether a student’s dorm possessions are covered by their parents’ homeowners or renters insurance policy depends on policy and carrier. We always recommend regular policy reviews with an insurance agent, especially before a major life event like a child going away to college. -Marisa

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