Life insurers not to invoke force majeure for claims

MUMBAI: The Life Insurance Council, an industry association constituted under the Insurance Act, has reassured policyholders that insurers will not deny death claims arising out of Covid-19 citing the force majeure clause. Broadly defined, force majeure is a term used in contracts which allows the parties to avoid their obligation if there is totally unexpected and unforeseen event that makes it impossible to fulfil the contract.
“Both public and private, are committed to process any death claim pertaining to Covid-19 at the earliest. All life insurance companies have also communicated to their customers individually in this regard,” the Life Insurance Council said in a statement.
The Council also confirmed that the clause of ‘force majeure’ will not apply in case of Covid-19 death claims. This step was taken to reassure customers who had reached out to individual life insurance companies seeking clarity on this clause in their contract as well as to dispel rumours to the contrary.
“The spiralling global and local impact of Covid-19 pandemic has emphasized the fundamental need for life insurance in every household. The life insurance industry is taking every measure to ensure that the disruption caused to policyholders, due to the lockdown is minimal, by providing them uninterrupted support digitally, be it for honouring death claims related to COVID-19 or for servicing their policy. We reiterate that all life insurance companies stand by their customers in these difficult times and the customer should not be swayed by misinformation or misrepresentation,” said SN Bhattacharya, secretary general, Life Insurance Council.

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