Umbrella Insurance in Washington

Experts break down umbrella insurance costs, coverage, and companies in Washington.

Ann Herro, Insurance Expert Written by Ann Herro
Ann Herro, Insurance Expert
Written by Ann Herro

Ann Herro has been writing about insurance and employee benefits for over 15 years. She has covered topics as easy as insuring a car, and as difficult as transparency in healthcare costs.

Reviewer: Jeffrey Green Reviewed by Jeffrey Green
Reviewer: Jeffrey Green
Reviewed by Jeffrey Green

Jeff Green has held a variety of sales and management roles at life insurance companies, Wall street firms, and distribution organizations over his 40-year career.  He was previously Finra 7,24,66 registered and held life insurance licenses in multiple states. He is a graduate of Stony Brook University.

Little girl outdoors near house and car riding skateboard. Find Washington umbrella insurance.

Lawsuits are a fact of life for residents of Washington state. No matter how cautious you are, accidents can happen. And if you’re at fault you can be sued.

In most cases, your auto insurance and home insurance will provide the coverage you need if you’re responsible for injuries or property damage. But what if you’re hit with that once-in-a-lifetime million-dollar lawsuit?

Umbrella insurance can help you bridge the gap between your basic personal insurance policies and a million-dollar (or more) judgment against you, and all that comes with it. An independent insurance agent in Washington can help you find umbrella insurance that fits your needs and budget.

What Is Umbrella Insurance?

Liability insurance is the portion of your personal insurance policies that pays for an injured person’s medical bills, rehabilitation, and lost wages due to your negligence. Liability insurance also covers your legal defense if a lawsuit goes to court.

Umbrella insurance provides liability coverage that is beyond the limits of your other personal insurance policies (e.g., home, auto, renters, condo, and boat insurance).

The standard amount of liability coverage in your homeowners or auto insurance policies will often not be enough in extreme cases. If you don’t have enough insurance, your personal assets could be seized. An umbrella policy fixes this gap in coverage by providing an additional $1 million to $5 million in coverage (larger amounts are also available).

Imagine that you are sued for $800,000 after an auto accident that is your fault. If your auto insurance pays $300,000 of medical expenses per accident and you have a $1 million umbrella policy, your auto insurance would pay $300,000 and your umbrella would pay the remaining $500,000 in damages.

What Does Umbrella Insurance Cover in Washington?

Umbrella insurance in Washington typically offers “follow form coverage.” This means that the umbrella policy covers what the underlying policy does. Washington umbrella insurance typically covers the following types of claims for any person that is covered under the primary insurance:

  • Personal injury
  • Advertising injury
  • Property damage liability
  • Slander
  • Libel
  • Defamation of character
  • False arrest, detention, or imprisonment
  • Malicious prosecution
  • Mental anguish

Your umbrella policy may offer coverage for certain losses that are not covered by the underlying policies, including covering you worldwide. So if you cause a car accident while driving abroad, your Washington auto insurance policy might not cover you, but your umbrella policy would.


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Who Needs Umbrella Insurance in Washington?

You may have heard that only wealthy people or those with a big house or a lot of personal assets need umbrella insurance in Washington. And while it’s true that certain people might have more assets to protect—making them more vulnerable to lawsuits—any Washington homeowner who wants protection from the harsh effects of a lawsuit should at least consider purchasing umbrella insurance.

Certain lifestyle characteristics or possessions do make you more susceptible to lawsuits. You should talk to an independent insurance agent in Washington about your need for an umbrella policy if:

  • You have a long daily commute or you drive frequently during rush hour (both increase your likelihood of being in a car accident).
  • You have a swimming pool, a trampoline, or a boat (this increases the likelihood of accidents and injuries on your property or causing an accident with your boat).
  • You own a dog (this increases the likelihood of a bite or your dog causing some kind of property damage to a neighbor or someone else).

If you like to entertain and frequently have guests in your home, you should seriously consider purchasing a personal umbrella policy. Having more people on your property simply increases the risk of someone getting injured, no matter how many precautions you take.

And even if you are not a high-risk individual, you can still be sued at any time. A personal injury lawsuit can result in an award of hundreds of thousands of dollars, or more. Million-dollar judgments are not uncommon.

If you don’t purchase an umbrella policy now, be sure to discuss it with your independent insurance agent each year as your situation changes.

How Much Umbrella Insurance Do I Need in Washington?

Umbrella insurance policies in Washington kick in only when the limits of the applicable underlying policies have been exhausted. They are typically sold in million-dollar increments, such as $1 million, $2 million, or $5 million. Your independent insurance agent will help you decide how much additional liability coverage you need to appropriately cover your assets should you be sued.

Washington state does not set eligibility requirements for purchasing umbrella insurance. But insurance companies will require that you have a certain level of underlying Washington home and auto insurance in order to purchase an umbrella policy. That means that if you don’t have both home and auto insurance, you won’t be able to buy Washington umbrella insurance.

Underlying coverage requirements may vary somewhat depending on the insurance company, but the typical requirements are as follows:

  • Auto Insurance
    • Bodily injury liability coverage of $250,000 per person/$500,000 per accident
  • Homeowners insurance
    • Personal liability coverage of $300,000

Some umbrella insurance providers require you to have your auto and homeowners insurance with them before they will issue you an umbrella policy. 

Can You Deduct Umbrella Insurance on Your Taxes in Washington?

Personal umbrella insurance premiums are not usually deductible from your taxes in Washington. You may, however, be able to deduct a portion of your premiums as a business expense if you own rental properties that are covered along with other personal assets under one personal umbrella policy.

If you own a business and have a business umbrella policy that supplements your other business liability policies, your premiums may be tax deductible.

What Are the Best Umbrella Insurance Companies in Washington?

It can be simple to find the best umbrella insurance companies in Washington. A local independent insurance agent can help you get umbrella insurance quotes from multiple insurance companies, so you can select the best policy for your needs and budget.

Why Shop Umbrella Insurance with a Washington Independent Insurance Agent?

Instead of getting an online quote, find an independent insurance agent now, and get one-on-one consultation and affordable options for the best coverage for your unique needs. Your agent will work with you free of charge, offering you a variety of options so you can make the best choice.  

What’s more, your agent will be there for you when claim time comes. They know the ins and outs of the process and will make sure your claim is handled appropriately.

Contact an agent today for a free, no-obligation consultation.

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