Category Archives: Insurance

Arranging for Your Pet’s Care After Your Death

Every year across America, healthy pets who have enjoyed loving homes find themselves in shelters and pounds because their owners have either grown too infirm to care for them or have died, leaving them bereft of love and comfort. Many of these pets, a great percentage of which are young and well trained, are put to death because no homes can be found for them. If you own a pet and find the thought of it meeting this kind of end, then there is something you can do about it. By creating a legal document and naming a pet guardian, as well as setting up a fund that will provide for your pet financially, you can ensure that your pet will live out its life in the care of someone who will love and provide for it.

The Responsibilities of a Pet Guardian

Many people aren’t even aware that funds and a guardian can be arranged for your pet in the event that you can no longer care for it. However, you can create a binding legal document with a guardian of your choosing, as long as he or she is willing to care for your pet after you die. Not only can you name a guardian of your choosing, you can also dictate what he or she can and cannot do with your pet. For instance, you can forbid the guardian from transferring ownership of the animal to another, unless in extreme cases, and ensure that the funds you leave are used only for the pet’s food and veterinary bills. Of course, you should choose your pet’s guardian carefully and make sure it is someone that your dog or cat knows and trusts. It will be in a state of confusion during the transition and will need extra reassurance and affection from that person.

Creating the Legal Papers

Once you have named a guardian for your pet, you are then ready to create the legal papers you will both have to sign. You can either get a local attorney to help you arrange the papers or even see legal help online. If you choose to go this route, make sure you know what you’re getting into before you make a final decision. Read Legal Zoom reviews and reviews about other online legal companies before you commit. Once you find a company that meets your needs, they will prepare the papers to your personal specifications and even help you set up a special bank account that you can add to in order to provide for your pet should you become seriously ill or die. While many people consider providing for their spouse or children in the event of their death, few people think of their pets and assume that family members will step in to care for them. However, in many cases, they might not have the room, time, or finances to take on a pet, and your beloved furry friend may find itself facing euthanasia. To make sure this doesn’t happen, you should make the naming of a pet guardian a priority as a part of your living will.

How to Find a Deal on Your Car

Are you interested in buying a new car (or a new-used car)? If you are, I would guess that you’d like to find the best deal possible on the car you want. But, before you start randomly searching for cars, it would be best to research a handful of cars that would really fit your wants and needs.

Also, before you decide on the couple of cars that are right for you, you’ll want to find out how good they are on gas and how high the insurance typically is. Even if you find a great deal on a car, it might eat you alive when it comes to fuel and insurance expenses. Suddenly that great deal will turn into a nightmare of a liability for your checkbook.

Follow these tips, and you’ll find a great deal on your next car:

1) Never Buy From the Dealer – Unless the dealer is your dad, you’re going to be paying a premium on every car on the lot. Just think about it. They need to sell their cars for at least a thousand bucks more than they paid for them just to survive. That’s their only means of income, and you’re the one that is going to keep their business going. It’s a much better idea to buy a car from a private party.

2) Don’t Be Afraid of a Long Distance Purchase – Ever hear of the book “The World is Flat?” If not, it basically talks about how our world is becoming more global every day. The barriers are coming down and everyone in the world has access to make a purchase over a thousand miles away. While the book didn’t specifically talk about car purchases, it absolutely fits the premise. When I used to search for a car, I would check to see what was within 50 miles of my house and then find buy the car that was the best deal, but why not search 1,500 miles away? A plane ticket only costs a hundred bucks one way. You could get most of the details over the phone and through email, then go take it for a test drive when you get there. If it purrs like a kitten, drive it home. Do this and you’ll probably pay $1,000 less than any car in your local area.

3) Check Craigslist – If you’re afraid of buying a car from the other side of the country, then by all means, check for vehicles in your local area on Craigslist. There are still deals to be found, but you’ll need to be more vigorous in your search. To find the best deals, try to find those cars that are owned by people that just want to make $500 more than their trade-in offer (so they don’t feel like they’re getting ripped off). They’ll be happy to sell it to you, and you’ll be getting a great deal compared to the standard retail price.

4) Check the Country Roads – There are still some non-Internet people out there that sell things by putting them alongside the road. Since they don’t list their car online, they most likely have much fewer interested parties looking at it. With less interest, the greater chance you have to haggle and get yourself a deal.

5) Look in the Newspaper – The newspaper is a terrible place to advertise your car today because no one looks in the paper anymore! But, as a buyer you might be able to get a great deal because of the fewer number of parties that will see the ad. When sellers don’t receive many phone calls, they might assume that they are asking too much for their car and be quite willing to lower the price.

Headlines & Prison Cells: Infamous Tales of Insurance Extortion

Fake deaths, bank rolling on national tragedies, and “Excuse me! Waiter! There’s a mouse in my soup!” — believe it, or not, there are some truly outrageous ways people try to extort money through bogus insurance claims that ultimately result in federal prison sentences. Moreover, these infractions result in higher premiums for you law-abiding types, as insurance companies have to recoup their losses somehow—unfortunately, this comes out of your pocket!

Out of thousands of attempts, here are three of the most outrageous insurance claims to ever make the headlines, as well as fill out prison cells.

1. “There’s a Mouse in My Soup!”

At a Cracker Barrel—a restaurant native to the southern U.S.—a woman by the name of Carla Patterson brought the roof down in a full-blown Academy Award winning performance after she allegedly found a mouse in her vegetable soup.

Unfortunately, no golden statues or $500,000 insurance settlements—the amount she tried to extort—were issued as an autopsy on the mouse was ordered. Yes, a mouse autopsy. Results from this test revealed that the mouse didn’t have a trace of soup in its lungs and showed no signs of having been cooked by scalding hot soup.

Sadly, this woman attempted this with the help of her son, landing them both in prison.

2. When National Tragedies Become… Opportunities

Shortly after the terrorist attack that leveled the Twin Towers on September 11, 2001, a man by the name of Charles Gavett — from Pike County, Georgia — reported to authorities that his wife had been present in the towers and had been killed. Of course, she was very much alive and was in on the whole thing, as the couple wanted to collect on her term life insurance policy.

In the wake of such a massive tragedy, with so many lives lost, they could have gotten away with it, and would have, had a neighbor not spotted her in town and reported it.

Sadly, this was only the first of many 9/11 insurance extortion attempts; according to insurance companies, they flooded in at a record high.

3. It’s Hard to Fake a Death Without a Body… Or Is It?

Fugitive from the law, Clayton Daniels, and his wife Molly, decided to deal with his infraction by employing a full-scale, movie-like, disappearance act that would not only get him off the police radar, but let them cash in on his $110,000 life insurance policy.

In order to pull this off, they had to fake Clayton’s death, but how do you do that without a body? Well, they went to the cemetery, armed with shovels, and dug one up. The grave that they exploited was that of Charlotte Davis, an elderly woman, who then they dressed in Clayton’s clothes, placed in his car, set it on fire, and then pushed the whole sham off a cliff.

Suspicions, of course, mounted when the insurance company ordered a DNA test — which didn’t match up, of course — and an investigation of the fire, which proved that the fire had initiated from the driver’s seat. If that hadn’t been enough to solidify this couple’s fate, Clayton showing up again a few weeks later with a flimsy disguise — a mustache and dyed hair — as Molly’s new boyfriend, Jake Gregg, surely sealed the deal.

Amongst all these bizarre stories, we are actually trying to convey a message – insurance is no laughing matter! Always deal with trusted providers like Suncorp Life Insurance, where you can be sure you will get the right information so you can make the best decision for your situation.