Out of the Ordinary Insurance

When I think of insurance, the four most basic policies come to mind: home, car, health, and life. For the average person, these might be the only policies you ever consider buying. What else could you possibly need?


There seem to be some people in this world with incredibly special assets, or at least a special sense of humor. 

Bankrate, a firm that compiles information allowing customers to compare anything from mortgage rates to CD deposit rates, published an article in June detailing the world’s strangest insurance policies. It did not disappoint. 

Dutch winemaker and owner of Chateau de la Garde in France, Ilja Gort, has a very special asset indeed: his nose. Gort had his nose insured for $8 million through Lloyd’s of London, a syndicate of members that insures special risks. Gort claims his nose can distinguish between millions of different scents, an impressive and invaluable skill for a winemaker and taster. Per his policy, Gort cannot participate in winter sports, boxing, or fire breathing for fear of losing his sense of smell. Even more valuable was Costa Coffee chief taster Gennario Pelliccia’s tongue, valued at $14 million by Lloyd’s. According to Bankrate’s article, the average tongue has 10,000 taste buds thus his are valued at $1,400 apiece! 

Ilja Golt and his precious nose. He should insure 
that funky mustache too!


For professional athletes and models, insuring bod parts is a different story. Soccer superstar, David Beckham, has a $70 million dollar policy on his legs. Real Madrid insured their own soccer phenom, Cristiano Rinaldo, and his lower half for $153 million. That means if Cristiano Rinaldo were to never play again due to injury, Real Madrid would collect $153 million in lost income due to his absence. ESPN published a similar article in October of 2009, writing that Joba Chamberlain of the NY Yankees, whose income at the time was merely $432,575, had a $5 million policy on his right arm. If here were to get injured, even if he “walks outside and gets hit by a bus”, in the words of his financial adviser, he would collect on his policy. Supermodel Heidi Klum’s legs are insured at a cool $2.2 million.

Unfortunately for some athletes, insuring their “golden ticket” body part is very difficult. Back in 2009, it would have cost Brett Favre $22.8 million to insure his right arm for one year. At the time, he was turning forty, had torn his biceps tendon the previous year, and was making $19 million per year. Takeru Kobayashi, the competitive eater, was denied coverage on his stomach despite no preexisting conditions. Apparently, wolfing down hot dogs is not a good enough reason to insure one’s stomach. 

These are only a few of the strange insurance policies is stumbled upon. Lloyd’s also offers insurance for the financial burden of having twins. One Michigan couple, already with a set of twins, purchased a policy and within months had twins again. You can also purchase a policy for bodily injury as a result of falling space debris through Lloyd’s. Rest assured that no matter what your needs are, there is a company out there that will have them covered!

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