What To Know About Your New York Insurance Policy

New York insurance policy concept, man in suit with insurance policy

Whether you’ve just obtained insurance or there’s a pending lawsuit, the insurance policy is central to your coverage. Far too few policyholders take the time to understand what’s actually in them, however. This can prove disastrous when it comes time to demand the insurer cover a loss. Do you have questions about your insurance policy? Has the insurance company denied a claim that it should have paid? Time to speak with a New York insurance coverage attorney.

Basic Rules of Insurance Policies

Insurance policies are contracts, and are therefore governed by principles of contract law. You and the insurer have agreed to certain things outlined in your contract (policy). Most insurance policies, regardless of what they insure, include the following:

Coverage Information

This section of the policy identifies the insurance company and you, the policyholder. It also contains details about the property or risks that are insured. The policy number, period of coverage, premiums, limits, and deductibles are also here. If you have questions or notice any mistakes, contact your insurance company immediately.

What Is Insured (and What Isn’t)

The policy should clarify what properties or risks are actually covered. This section will typically go into detail about activities insured, along with damages and costs the insurer will pay. Any activities or losses that are not covered will also be spelled out. There will likely also be terms about voiding coverage. For example, using your personal home to conduct business may void insurance coverage.

Conditions and Obligations

The rights and duties of both policyholder and insurer should be clearly stated in the policy. It is essential that you have a clear understanding of what your responsibilities are. For instance, you may be required to mitigate damages after a covered loss. This means taking reasonable steps to prevent the loss from getting worse.

If you don’t understand the conditions and obligations, reach out to a New York insurance coverage attorney.

Making a Claim

Policies usually set forth steps that are required to make a claim. Failure to abide by these steps could put you at risk of not being covered. Typically, policies will specify the following (among other things):

  • How soon the loss must be reported to the insurance company
  • What should be included in the notice you provide the insurer
  • Where and how to submit your claim
  • Any additional steps you must take related to making a claim

How Most Insurance Disputes Arise

Understanding your insurance policy won’t guarantee that any losses you have will be covered. Insurance companies are businesses, and they work hard to deny even legitimate claims. Disputes over insurance coverage usually involve one (or more) of the following:

  • Disagreements over the language in the policy, e.g vague or ambiguous terms
  • Allegations of bad faith, meaning the insurer failed to treat you fairly in denying a claim
  • The amount of money the insurance company wants to pay for your loss
  • Whether you paid your insurance premiums on time (which could affect your coverage)
  • Whether the insurer or the policyholder failed to do something required by the policy

Here to Serve All of Your New York Insurance Needs

Time is not on your side when dealing with these and related disputes. Without coverage, you could be forced to pay for any losses yourself. This could cause serious financial and personal problems that the insurance policy should have covered.

If your claim was denied, or the insurance company is trying to pay less than you deserve, talk to Rosenbaum & Taylor. We can also answer questions you have about the nature of your insurance coverage. Call us today.

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