Shimon Cohen – Insurance

August Tips From Egert & Cohen

This is not the peaceful summer we were waiting for! We pray for the safe return of our soldiers and for calm and sanity to return to our beloved land.

Despite everything, life must go on so here are this month’s tips:

Tip #1:

Travel Insurance:

  • Don’t forget to take out travel insurance! (We always have a few “last-minute-on-the-way-to-the-airport” requests!)
  • Make sure that the policy covers any pre-existing medical conditions you might have.
  • Pregnant? Mazal Tov! We can cover up to week 36 and age 36 (for emergencies).


Now the big question, if I have free travel insurance through my credit card, why do I need a private policy through Egert and Cohen?


1) The free policies have a limit of $2,000 per day for hospitalization and up to $1,600 for out-patient costs. This is not enough for serious cases.
2) The “freebies” usually don’t deal well with any complications such as extending cover, last minutes changes, etc.
3) CLAIMS! This is most important. If you are insured through your card, do you know who will deal with your claims when you return? (Gulp!) At E/C we obviously handle all claims for you.

Direct on-line sign up:

Tip #2:

What is your most expensive material possession? Your house, right! And yet many people do not insure it for the correct value. For example, if you have a mortgage, the bank will require you to take out an insurance policy to the tune of approximately $1,200 per square meter. That means that if your house in Rechavia or Ramat Bet Shemesh is 90 square meters, you are insuring it for $108,000. Try and buy your house for that amount of money!!!

Now, wait a moment. It’s also true that you generally don’t insure for the market value of your home but rather the rebuilding cost which is much lower. All this is true for a free standing house where even a terrible fire would not require sinking new foundations, paying for the cost of land, etc. However, what about an apartment on the 4th floor of a building? What if the building is damaged and only a few tenants are insured. How do you rebuild?

Tragically this happened to one of our clients whose apartment was destroyed in the gas-cylinder explosion in Jerusalem a few months back. Her side of the building was totally destroyed but only a few residents were insured. She thankfully was insured but not for nearly enough to buy a new apartment.

The Solution: In Hebrew, Erech Karka (or land value). Many companies will now allow you to insure for up to three times the rebuilding value. This will ensure that in the case of a disaster, you will get at least close to your home’s real value.
Here is how one calculates the insurance value of your home of 100 square meters:

  • 100 square meters X current rebuilding rate $1,500 = $150,000.
  • Add on land value (up to three times the rebuilding rate = $150,000 X 3 = $450,000.
  • Total: (1 + 2) = $600,000

Remember, you should obviously try and insure your home for its real value. Building insurance is relatively inexpensive. When your most valuable asset is at stake, it’s probably worth it. Call us for more details.

3) Claim of the Month

Shalom’s wife lost one of her earrings, presumably when she was on an overseas visit. When they returned, she approached us but then realized that they had forgotten to add on cover for overseas travel. The claim was denied. A few months later, the other earring went missing (in Israel). After searching their home, the earring didn’t turn up and the claim was paid. Last week, while cleaning (in the area where they kept their suitcases), one earring turned up! The $64,000 question: Was this the “overseas” earring or the “Israeli” one? If it was the one they lost in Israel, they were paid out for it. Do they have to return the money?

After asking their Rav, he requested that we ask the insurance company as well. The claims manager was highly impressed with the family’s honesty. He immediately said that they should keep the earring and use the claim money in health and happiness.

We pray for a new month of safety, peace and happiness.


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