A Misrepresentation of Fact May Estop an Insurer From Relying on the Suit Limitation Defense

Summer 2002

Reprinted with permission by the Journal of Insurance Coverage. 

After an insured gives notice of a loss, the insurer usually sends a representative to the loss site to, among other things, ascertain the extent of the covered damages. In some cases, the representative will conclude, and then tell the insured, that the loss falls below the policy deductible. Assume that a year or more later (after the policy's suit limitation period has expired) the insured discovers that the damage actually exceeds the deductible. Is the insured's claim now barred by the policy's suit limitation provision?

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Scott G. Johnson

Partner

Chair, Minneapolis Insurance Group

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