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How does a cell phone insurance company work? Your cellular phone insurance guide

Updated on July 14, 2009

My Celluar Story

So I recently sat down at a restaurant which I frequent quite often. I had a bowl of clam chowder with my favorite salty crackers. While enjoying my meal I happened to be on my phone. I don't really remember what the conversation was about about but it continued into the bathroom stall. Being the gifted athlete, I dropped my phone straight into the commode and what was once my pride and joy, fell victim to the all mighty urinal. In the paragraphs to follow I will attempt to explain how cell phone insurance companies work and how you should handle damage to your phone.

Cellular Phone Insurance Explained

I personally think that insurance companies in general get somewhat of a raw deal. There responsibility are to indemnify or make whole. Some of the biggest insurance companies are The Signal, Asurion, and National Cellular Association to name a few. These guys generally have no actual association with your cell phone provider and are thus considered 3rd party insurers. If your phone becomes inoperable for any reason you can find coverage through these providers. An example of a few claims are as follows: Phone getting run over by a car / dropping a phone from heights / leaving your device in the microwave and of course dropping the phone in the commode.

It's been my experience (I've only used Asurion thus far) that the companies hold true to form. Upon a claim being approved they generally ship your device overnight. Meaning a claim submitted and approved on a Monday can theoretically be received by the claimant on a Tuesday. The claims process is actually done online via a series of 5 questions and literally takes all of 5 minutes. After giving a brief description of loss all is needed is payment info and the address in which you want your replacement device shipped.

Negatives of the 3rd Party Cell phone Insurer

There are some negatives associated with the cell phone insurance company. You are forced to pay a retainer amount between $4.99 - $10.99 a month. This amount is simply tacked on your cell phone bill and is not refundable. When it's time to place your claim a deductible of a least $50.00 will apply which is again non-refundable. It's up to the carrier to provide you with a replacement device. They prefer to replace your device with the same model but if this isn't available they will choose one similar in-make. Because the insured and insurer generally have conflicting motives (Cost vs Functionality) it is best to contact your insurance representative if you are not happy with the phone chosen for you. These are some of the guidelines I can offer when it comes to choosing a / an insurance cell phone provider.


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    • Dink96 profile image

      Dink96 8 years ago from Phoenix, AZ

      I was not aware this was available, but knowing insurance companies, I suppose it was inevitable they would offer this coverage. Great info in here. Thanks for passing it along!