Am I Covered by my Insurance Policy?
After an auto accident, there are many questions you or your loved one may have. Many of them, from what our attorneys have seen over the years serving the Denver community, relate to insurance.
When you purchase an auto insurance policy, it is critical that you carefully read over the terms and coverage. Even if you do take the time to analyze the details, however, you may not remember all the terms of your policy. Insurance is one of those things that isn’t at the top of your mind—until you need it.
The experienced Denver car accident injury attorneys at The Law Offices of Dianne L. Sawaya LLC can help you and your loved ones understand your insurance policy after a crash. Often times, the language of a policy is unfamiliar and unclear. The help of a lawyer can bring clarity to this confusing process, helping you to decide what steps to take next.
To help you understand some of the key aspects of an auto insurance policy, we’ve pulled together a list of terms you need to understand. To help explain, we’ve borrowed some examples from national auto insurance policies.
- Policy Declarations: The first page of your auto insurance policy is typically the declarations page. This portion of the policy says who is insured, as well as the time period the policy covers. It also gives coverage limits.
- Definitions: This is one of the most helpful sections of the policy; it gives you the definitions of words and phrases you’ll see in the policy, many that may be unfamiliar. Usually, words in your policy that appear in bold print can be found in the definitions section.
- Policy Coverage: This section of your policy describes the specific insurance provided. It does so by listing what property is covered, and often, for what perils. For example, if you own a pickup truck, the policy may cover direct physical loss or damage to the truck. This section may also provide liability coverage.
- Policy Exclusions: This section of your insurance policy describes what limits exist, or how coverage may be eliminated if the loss occurs in a certain manner. For example, catastrophic events (nuclear explosions, war) may not be covered and in some instances liability arising out of a vehicle being used for work such as pizza delivery. You may be able to buy back this coverage for additional premiums.
- Limits and Special Limits: This is the section that will most likely affect your wallet. Here, you can see how much the insurer pays for particular losses or types of property. So, while your vehicle may be covered, it could be covered for specific dollar amount, or for a limited percentage for the entire loss.
- Conditions: Want to cancel your policy? Unclear about the payment plan? This section tells you what your responsibilities are as the insured, as well as what the insurer’s responsibilities are to you.
- Duties and a Loss: After you’ve been in an accident, be sure to check this section of your policy. Essentially, it outlines what you need to do after a loss occurs. This includes such things as notifying your insurer as soon as is practical, contacting the police, etc.
- Endorsements: If you are adding additional coverage to your policy coverage, look here to find them. Endorsements alter your auto insurance policy to help it better fit your needs. The insurance company may also add what are called “amendatory endorsements” to help clarify terms and language.
Read Our Guide: Working With Insurance Companies
As you can see, your insurance policy may be difficult to fully understand without careful study. If you’ve been hurt in a crash, turn to an experienced Denver injury attorney for help.
Contact the experienced auto accident lawyers at The Law Offices of Dianne L. Sawaya LLC today. Our team can help break down your coverage, explain your legal options, and deal with the insurance company on your behalf.
After an injury, you should be focusing on healing—let us communicate with the insurance company. Call us today.