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Driver with voided policy gets money back -- and bigger trouble


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Question:  My insurance policy was voided for misrepresentation. A letter was sent to me stating that I would receive a full premium refund for the policy. Does this mean I will receive all money paid for the policy? 

Answer:  If your insurance company letter stated that your auto policy was being voided back to its inception and that you were receiving a full premium refund, then you should receive all the money you paid toward your policy’s premium.

When you started your policy there may have been some nonrefundable fees included on top of the actual car insurance premium, such as policy or agency fees that are allowed by state laws. If you did have such fees, then depending on state laws and your contract with the insurer, you may not receive the money you paid out for these back; however, all of the money paid toward your actual car insurance premium should be refunded. 

Normally, if your car insurance policy is voided it means that it’s canceled as though it never took effect, and this may be a bigger issue for you than how much money you’ll be refunded.

If you now technically never had auto insurance coverage on your vehicle with this carrier, it may be possible that your state could deem this as a lapse in coverage and penalize you.

Even if your state doesn’t punish you for this situation, it’s likely going to be harder for you to find car insurance coverage with a new carrier. When your last policy has been canceled (or voided) out due to certain circumstances, car insurance companies can find you too much of a risk to take on and not offer you a policy.

You didn’t mention what type of misrepresentation your auto insurance policy was canceled for, but misrepresentation is a big deal to car insurance providers and in many states is considered a form of insurance fraud.

As Connecticut's Insurance Department explains, there is a general principle in insurance law that an applicant for insurance has the duty to disclose to the insurer all facts material to the risk. Material facts are those that influence an insurer’s calculations of your premium or their decision of whether they will issue you a policy at all.  A misrepresentation then is an inaccurate disclosure. 

You can check with your state’s insurance regulator for your state’s definition (and punishment) for misrepresentation on an auto insurance policy, but typically it can be something as simple as not listing an accident or traffic ticket, or something of significance, such as omitting a licensed household member or giving wrong information about the true owner of a car

When applying for car insurance you need to give accurate information.  Without correct information on the application, car insurance companies can’t really determine if they will insure you and if so for what premium amount.

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