Read the language of your insurance policy that giveth, then taketh

Insurance policies are written contracts where an insured promises to pay a premium in exchange for insurance coverage. The amount of the premium charged is generally clearly communicated by the insurer. What is often less clear is exactly what insurance coverage has been purchased. Insurance policies are treated like other legal contracts. Therefore, legal principles applicable to contracts generally apply to insurance policies. As such, even though an insurance policy is virtually always written by the insurance company using language that is uncommon for most people, the law still presumes that the insured has carefully read and understands the insurance policy. This legal presumption is often not what has happened, because most people don’t bother to read their insurance policies. Instead, most people guess that they have been provided with the right type of insurance. However, not all insurance policies are created equal. Moreover, most insurance policies start with language stating what is generally covered, followed by language stating what is not covered. Therefore, a person who buys an automobile rental insurance policy thinking that their rented jeep is covered, may possibly find out that their jeep is not covered if it is being driven on a dirt road.  The problem of a person not knowing what insurance they have bought is also often compounded by the fact that they don’t receive a copy of the actual policy language until after the insurance policy has been purchased. Although most of us usually do not buy something without knowing exactly what is being bought, insurance is something that most of us in fact buy without knowing exactly what we have bought. Although reading an insurance policy can be boring and tedious, a careful person still takes the time to carefully read their insurance policies. If there is a policy provision that you don’t understand, ask a trained lawyer with expertise in insurance coverage to review what the insurance contract says before an accident happens.

The attorneys at Lemons, Grundy & Eisenberg have the expertise to answer questions on what insurance coverage is provided by the language of an insurance policy.