Advocate Abhishek Sharma
Insurance law is the practice of law surrounding insurance, including insurance policies and claims. It can be broadly broken into three categories – regulation of the business of insurance; regulation of the content of insurance policies, especially with regard to consumer policies; and regulation of claim handling.
Insurance Association of India, Insurance Councils and Committees thereof … 70 Insurance Companies to Accept Risk on an Insurance Policy Only after Receipt of Premiums in Advance … 70 Opening of Places of Business Requires prior Approval of IRDA … 71 Powers of IRDA for Imposition of Penalties for Default in Complying with the Act (Section 102)
Welcome to the Insurance Law
The doctrine of uberrimae fides – utmost good faith – is present in the insurance law of all common law systems. An insurance contract is a contract of utmost good faith. The most important expression of that principle, under the doctrine as it has been interpreted in England, is that the prospective insured must accurately disclose to the insurer everything that he knows and that is or would be material to the reasonable insurer. Something is material if it would influence a prudent insurer in determining whether to write a risk, and if so upon what terms. If the insurer is not told everything material about the risk, or if a material misrepresentation is made, the insurer may avoid (or “rescind”) the policy, i.e. the insurer may treat the policy as having been void from inception, returning the premium paid. Reinsurance contracts (between reinsurers and insurers/cedents) require the highest level of utmost good faith, and such utmost good faith is considered the foundation of reinsurance. In order to make reinsurance affordable, a reinsurer cannot duplicate costly insurer underwriting and claim handling costs, and must rely on an insurer’s absolute transparency and candor. In return, a reinsurer must appropriately investigate and reimburse an insurer’s good faith claim payments, following the fortunes of the cedent
The insurance sector went through a full circle of phases from being unregulated to completely regulated and then currently being partly deregulated. It is governed by a number of acts. The first statute in India to regulate the life insurance business was the Indian Life Assurance Companies Act, 1912. The Insurance Act of 1938 was the first legislation governing all forms of insurance to provide strict state control over insurance business. Life insurance in India was completely nationalized on January 19, 1956, through the Life Insurance Corporation Act. All 245 insurance companies operating then in the country were merged into one entity, the Life Insurance Corporation of India.
The General Insurance Business Act of 1972 was enacted to nationalise the about 100 general insurance companies then and subsequently merging them into four companies. All the companies were amalgamated into National Insurance, New India Assurance, Oriental Insurance and United India Insurance, which were headquartered in each of the four metropolitan cities.
Until 1999, there were no private insurance companies in India. The government then introduced the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority Act in 1999, thereby de-regulating the insurance sector and allowing private companies. Furthermore, foreign investment was also allowed and capped at 26% holding in the Indian insurance companies. In 2015 the limit of FDI in insurance sector has been raised to 49% subject to certain conditions.
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Advocate Abhishek sharma
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