Will Homeowner’s Insurance Cover a TV Damaged by a Flying Wii Controller?

Your homeowner's insurance policy is designed to compensate you for damage to the physical structure of your home. If your home becomes unusable due to fire, internal water damage or burglary, your policy should cover any related damages. One major exception to this rule is flooding: Few homeowner's insurance policies have any provision for internal or external flood damage. If you live in a flood-prone area, you'll need to take out a separate flood insurance policy.

Most homeowner's insurance policies also cover certain household items. Your insurance company may compensate you in part or in full for possessions damaged or stolen during the course of a robbery, fire or other incident. However, there are certain limitations to this promise of coverage. If the incident that led to the loss was the result of negligence on your behalf, it's unlikely that your homeowner's insurance policy would honor your claim.

Most insurance companies have strict requirements for determining negligence. When you file a claim, the insurance adjuster tasked with investigating the incident will thoroughly investigate the circumstances surrounding the incident and make a full report to his or her employer. Any indications of negligence or fraud may disqualify your claim from consideration.

The precise definition of negligence can vary considerably between insurers. In general, you'll be found to be negligent when you could reasonably have been expected to take steps to prevent the incident that led to your claim. For instance, you may be found to have facilitated a burglary by leaving your first-floor window open and unlocked before leaving your house for an extended period of time. Likewise, you may be held responsible for internal water damage caused by poorly-maintained pipes. In general, you must take every reasonable precaution to ensure that your home is not vulnerable to damage or forced entry. In some cases, your insurer may even require you to obtain an alarm.

It's likely that your insurance company would consider any damage caused by a flying Wii controller to be the result of negligence. Wii controllers are fitted with a wrist-strap designed to keep the device from flying through the air during use. If your controller became airborne and struck your TV, it's unlikely that you were wearing the wrist-strap in the proper manner. As such, your insurer would almost certainly refuse to pay for the damage to your TV. You might increase your chances of securing compensation for your TV by taking out a "special coverage" rider with your insurance provider.

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