Private liability: The best insurance companies in a current comparison in 2023
Sometimes it’s a mishap, sometimes recklessness or just forgetfulness – it’s already happened. While the red wine stain on the designer carpet is still a manageable damage, it quickly becomes really expensive when a person is injured. Treatment, rehabilitation and compensation for pain and suffering – depending on the injury and long-term effects, this can even run into the millions.
In both cases, anyone who causes damage to others must answer for it – and to an unlimited extent. So say the law. It’s good to have taken out private liability insurance. In case of doubt, it even saves the person who caused the damage from ruin. Because in the worst case, the polluter is liable with his house and property, with his bank balance, wages and salary. Even a later inheritance or lottery win can be accessed. The polluter is liable for the damage with all his assets.
Protection against this risk should actually be a matter of course, especially since it is quite cheap. “Private liability insurance is the most important voluntary policy, but a good 17 percent of households in Germany do without this protection,” according to the General Association of the German Insurance Industry (GDV). For singles it is even 27 percent. The Germans are often described as being overly cautious and very well insured, but many households still lack insurance against existential risks. “Unfortunately, there is still a very high proportion of people who do not have the appropriate insurance,” reports Thomas Ruhl-Erzgräber, insurance analyst at Morgen & Morgen (M&M).
The analysis company M&M has selected the best private liability policies for two model cases exclusively for WirtschaftsWoche. Only insurance companies with five M&M stars, the top rating, were analyzed. The tariffs with the best price-performance ratio were then awarded.
Also read: Which insurance you really need – and which you don’t
Sample case number one is a family with two children aged ten and 18 years. The adult child should be insured during a planned voluntary social year. The voluntary commitment of parents should also be taken into account. Damage caused by acts of favor in the case of neighborly support should also be included in the tariff.
The tariff also covers the loss of third-party private keys and business keys, protection against bad debts including active legal protection, unlimited foreign coverage within Europe, worldwide protection for stays abroad, damage to rented property, movable property, damage to rented property to mobile furnishings, co-insurance of a photovoltaic system and damage during loading and unloading unloading of motor vehicles.
Sample case number two is a single woman. The 35-year-old likes to travel and then rents a small apartment and a car. She also does volunteer work. She is looking for insurance protection with a very good price-performance ratio, protection for stays abroad worldwide, when exercising her voluntary work, against bad debts including active legal protection, damage to rented property on movable property and mobile furnishings as well as damage caused by electronic data.
The family can choose between ten policies that have been rated "Very Good". The cheapest policies are offered by HDI with a premium of 80.86 euros, landowners with a premium of 87.79 euros and liability insurance with 88.89 euros. Tariffs from Alte Leipziger, Waldenburger, Interlloyd, Barmenia, Janitos, NV-Versicherungen and InterRisk are also excellent.
The 35-year-old has five “very good” tariffs to choose from. The Alte Leipziger is best placed with a premium of 51.88 euros, followed by Barmenia with 59.30 euros, the liability insurance company with 64.26 euros, NV insurance with 77.35 euros and uniVersa with 81.98 euros.
Personal liability insurance is a must
The analysis shows how cheap private liability insurance is. In addition, it is probably one of the most undisputed types of insurance. "Every adult needs private liability insurance," comments Sandra Klug, head of the investment, pension and insurance department at the Hamburg Consumer Advice Center. The policy pays for personal injury, property damage and financial loss caused by the insured. "Without insurance, you have to bear the costs yourself and that can get really expensive, especially in the case of personal injury."
In principle, nobody should do without this insurance, emphasizes the consumer advocate. Julia Alice Böhne from the Association of Insured Persons (BdV) also speaks of “indispensable insurance protection”. However, not every person needs their own contract. "Family plans include spouses, civil partners and at least minor children," she explains. Partners living in a non-marital partnership and their children can also use a contract together – if they live together in the same household. Even adult children are often insured up to a certain age, as long as they are not married and are still in their first school or vocational training.
A good contract should meet a few minimum criteria, emphasizes Böhne. For example, rented property damage to immovable property such as living space should be insured for at least one million euros. And rented property damage to movable, rented, borrowed and leased property should also be insured. The sum insured should be at least 15 million euros for property damage, personal injury and financial loss. Consumer advocate Klug even recommends choosing 50 million euros - as in the model cases. The insurer only pays up to the sums insured for personal injury, property damage and financial loss stated in the insurance policy.
Private liability insurance is a policy that is cheap and that no one should do without. Even gross negligence is insured. Only damage caused intentionally is excluded.
Also read: How to insure when the damage is already there?