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Jewish World Review
June 22, 2007
/ 13 Tamuz, 5767
A modest proposal for marriage insurance
When we had our taxes figured, our accountant mentioned his daughter was getting married this summer. He said the rental cost for chairs alone was approaching several thousand dollars.
He explained the guests would need chairs by the Canal Plaza where the ceremony would be, and then they would need chairs inside where the reception would be.
Our accountant's idea and granted he's a CPA, not a wedding planner, but it made perfect sense to us was to assign each guest a chair and tell them to keep it with them at all times.
"Of course, a BYOC event," I mused. "Bring your own chair."
"Exactly," he said.
His daughter didn't go for it, and, call it coincidence, but our fee for this year's tax service jumped considerably.
I have been thinking of calling our accountant to let him know about something called wedding insurance.
Responding to the rising cost of weddings, companies now offer liability coverage and coverage for non-refundable deposits. If a tornado rips the roof off the banquet hall, not to worry. Your deposit is as good as in the mail. If the board of health shuts down the caterer, if Uncle Walt dislocates vertebrae doing "Twist and Shout," if all the wedding photos are out of focus, it's all covered.
A reader familiar with wedding insurance, and at the end of a painful divorce, asked what an insurance policy for a marriage might look like.
A marriage policy would definitely provide structural coverage. In the event a man and woman fell victim to unexpected hardship that caused their marriage to implode, the insurance company would send Marv and Betty from Jersey City to live with them.
Having been married for 37 years, raised four kids (one with a severe disability) and run a dry cleaning business that went bust twice and was torched once, Marv and Betty would be a daily reminder that obstacles can be overcome.
The personal belongings clause of a marriage policy would cover wardrobe, sports equipment, the remote control, furniture, jewelry, cars, debit and credit cards. Should incessant bickering over material goods result in a claim, the insurance policy would automatically enable the couple to be embedded with troops in Iraq for six months.
A marriage policy would not cover abuse, abandonment or serial adultery, but it would offer liability protection for damage caused by the mouth. This would cover destruction due to a bellicose tone, brutal sarcasm, yelling, sniping, carping, and mean-spirited jokes.
Such liability coverage would be offered, but few could afford it.
The only thing close to marriage insurance is nestled in the wedding vows. It's that part when the starry-eyed couple pledges faithfulness for better or worse, for richer or poorer, in sickness and in health.
It's not insurance, and it's not a guarantee, but it's a vow, and that's as close as any two human beings can come.
It is much easier to insure a wedding than a marriage. But why wouldn't it be? They are two entirely different things.
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© 2007, Lori Borgman
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