These posts got me thinking about insurance for superheroes. Not just insurance purchased by the public to protect against any damage caused by superheoes, but insurance purchased by the heroes themselves. Insurance firms in the real world have shown themselves willing to insure elements of an invidual such as the legs of a supermodel or a singer's voice. If these special abilities and attributes can be insured, why can't super powers?
This type of insurance would likely apply to those heroes who are not independently wealthy. If Tony Stark's armor is damaged, he has the money to repair it. But if the Punisher loses a prize shotgun or has his property crushed by an irate Russian man, how will he get a new one (especially since he has no discernable source of income)? It's up to superhero insurance to replace these tools and abilities, if possible. If the Flash loses his super-speed, the company which insures his power would be tasked with buying a rack of chemicals and getting said rack struck by lightning while Barry Allen stood next to it.
In my previously listed example a supermodel's legs contribute greatly to her livelihood. The model makes her money based on her looks and if those looks are damaged, her ability to earn money is greatly diminished. Hence the need for insurance. This is not necessarily true for superheroes. Most heroes do not derive their economic support from their powers or tools. However, the powers and super weapons do have intrinsic value for the protection of society. If Luke Cage loses his powers, there is a void in the protection of urban areas. The first goal of insurance should be to pay for an attempt to restore his powers. But if this is unsuccessful the company insuring Luke Cage's invulnerability could pay for youth centers and more police officers if Cage's powers disappear. This would be a good option in lieu of providing the money to Cage himself.
Another aspect of insuring superhero attributes and weapons would be to protect against any damage caused by them. This particular insurance could work a lot like car insurance. If your car damages another vehicle, the insurance you purchased for your car will be used to repair the damages to another individual's property. This type of coverage could be applied to the superhero world. If, for example, your mighty thunder hammer Mjolnir is used to destroy a children's hospital, the insurance you place on the hammer could be used to repair the damage up to a pre-arranged amount determined by the insurance companies.
The insurance could also protect against damaged caused by high-jacked superpowers. If the Mandarin takes control of your armor or Mimic steals your optic blasts, it would be reassuring to know that a financial institution had capital and established procedures to back you up.
Of course, there exists the question of who will pay the outrageously high premiums of items of such high value as Thor's hammer and Spider-Man's spider sense. These are items that, if placed in a Mastercard commercial, would likely fall under the category of "priceless." The cost could be partially underwritten by the government and the superhero him/herself. It's also possible that the hero could provide services of more traditional economic value (such as endorsing the company that insures them in advertising spots) in order to reimburse some of the company's investment.
Regardless, this method of insurance would center around the hero and not the environment that they interact with and could provide more focused insurance. But thoughts are welcome about how this system could work and whether it would even be feasible for any company to become involved with superhero insurance.