Purchasing policies for specific body parts is not a typical topic of conversation in the insurance world. Although in most cases it is celebrities who want this kind of coverage, there are also instances in which other people could benefit from it. For example, if your income depends on the use of a particular appendage or body part, it could affect your livelihood. Therefore, here are a few reasons why you should insure your body parts if you fall into this category.
3 Reasons You Should Insure Your Body Parts
While it might seem like a strange notion to you, many people have insured their body parts in the past. Certain careers, such as athletes, entertainers, and artists depend on their skills or appearance to earn an income. Here are some of the most common reasons why people have decided they should insure their body parts.
1. You want to protect your assets.
Without a doubt, entertainment companies are willing to shell out big bucks to insure their cash cows. This is even more important if the celebrity is known for a trademark feature or aspect of their appearance. Whether it is Julia Roberts’ smile or Tom Jones’ chest hair, these entertainers are instantly recognizable because of them. So, it makes sense to protect your source of income. As former playmate Holly Madison said after insuring her breasts for $1 million, they are important “assets.” If anything would happen to them, it would affect their ability to work and bring in income.
Looking at it from the professional sports franchises’ perspective, each athlete is vital for their business to make money as well. If their all-star athletes aren’t able to play, they lose money in ticket and merchandise sales. Therefore, sports teams often have a general disability policy if their stars have an accident that keeps them from playing. These types of policies are available from most standard insurers. However, you will need to find more specialized insurance companies if you want to insure a body part. Athletes like David Beckham and Cristiano Renaldo did exactly this, insuring their legs with multi-million dollar policies to protect the assets that helped make them famous.
2. You will have disability insurance should you have a career-ending injury.
One of the most important reasons why you should insure your body parts is because the policies provide coverage in case of death, damage, or dismemberment. Not only do people want to protect their assets, but also make sure they have a source of income if they have an accident or career-ending injury. Taking out disability insurance for specific body parts would supplement their income if they are no longer able to perform their craft or skill that they depend on to earn money. Actors and models purchase policies to protect their appearance while athletes insure the body parts they rely on to play at the professional level.
However, they aren’t the only occupations that can benefit from customized insurance policies. Musicians and artists sometimes insure their hands or vocal cords in case they can no longer perform or create. Chefs and wine tasters have also been known to insure their taste buds as well. If they were to lose their sense of taste or smell, it could cost them their entire livelihood.
3. It could generate more business with free publicity.
Another reason some people suspect that celebrities insure their body parts is to generate publicity. As ridiculous as this may sound, stories like this grab headlines and get people talking. If the story stirs up enough buzz, it creates a lot of free publicity.
In fact, a supermarket in the UK used this publicity stunt to generate more income. They insured the taste buds of their senior wine buyer for 10 million pounds (about $17.3 million). What seemed like a crazy idea turned into a huge profit for them. The story was picked up by three magazines and six national newspapers. Then, following the story, the supermarket’s wine sales increased by 19%.
Some have suggested that celebrities do this as well. While the rumor has never been confirmed, there was gossip that Mariah Carey insured her legs for $1 billion. However, the timing happened to coincide perfectly with the beginning of her “Adventures of MiMi” tour. Whether the rumor is true or not, Carey still made $27.9 million in box office sales that tour.
How Do You Insure Your Body Parts?
Although these insurance policies aren’t exclusively available to celebrities, they do cost more than the average person can afford. These are not your standard insurance policy. They will personalize it to each client’s specific needs. So, you should expect to pay a high price for their attention to detail.
If you decide to insure your body parts, options are limited. Most people who want to insure their body parts must consult with one company that has become internationally known for selling specialized insurance. Lloyd’s of London has provided some of the most famous insurance policies for celebrities for over 100 years. One of the first celebrities to seek such a policy was silent film star, Ben Turpin, who bought $25,000 of coverage to insure his crossed eyes. However, they continue to sell specialized policies today to many celebrities worth millions of dollars.
The Most Expensive Body Parts Ever Insured (Reportedly)
Even though it is possible, it is still not common practice to insure body parts. However, several celebrities have gone to great lengths to protect their assets. Here is a list of the ten most expensive insurance policies (reported but not confirmed) ever purchased.
- Mariah Carey’s legs – $1 billion
- J-Lo’s butt – $300 million
- Cristiano Ronaldo’s legs – $144 million
- David Beckham’s legs – $70 million
- Michael Flatley’s legs – $40 million
- Julia Robert’s smile – $30 million
- America Ferrera’s smile – $10 million
- Daniel Craig’s body – $9.5 million
- Tom Jones’ chest hair – $7 million
- Bruce Springsteen’s voice – $6 million
The celebrities have made headlines with their unusual insurance policies. However, this list is likely to expand and change as more people decide to view their bodies as assets worth insuring.
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Jenny Smedra is an avid world traveler, ESL teacher, former archaeologist, and freelance writer. Choosing a life abroad had strengthened her commitment to finding ways to bring people together across language and cultural barriers. While most of her time is dedicated to either working with children, she also enjoys good friends, good food, and new adventures.