Are you as ‘skelm’ as I am when it comes to insurance?
Take scratch and dent insurance for example:
What’s the first thing that crosses your mind when your car gets scratched? Can I take out a scratch and dent insurance policy right now and claim? Am I right?
Your mind starts thinking of ways to claim…How will they know when my car got scratched anyway? Just pay for a month, claim, and then cancel once the scratch is fixed.
How far down this rabbit hole you go depends on your moral compass. Somehow I don’t think insurance companies are relying on our moral values to show us what’s right and what’s wrong.
Then your mind jumps to divorce…
What’s one of the first thing a couple getting divorced think of? I’m guessing it’s: “Where do I find the money for the lawyer?” I bet they’re visiting the LegalWise website as we speak.
So, I got to thinking about the risk to the insurance company.
What’s to stop anyone who’s planning on getting divorced, from taking out legal insurance, and then claiming three months down the line?
A few questions sprang to mind:
- Can you even claim for divorce?
- If yes, is there any waiting periods before being allowed to claim?
- And lastly, what if both of you are on the same policy? Who gets representation and who doesn’t?
It’s been a while since we wrote anything about legal insurance which means we needed a refresher course. We were looking for answers to this question…
How do the legal insurance companies handle divorce?
There are several companies offering legal insurance out there. You might know of more, but the following are prominent on the internet:
Let’s look at what their websites say about divorce.
Clientele Personal Legal Cover
We couldn’t find much available on the website besides their brochure. However, we did notice that pre-existing conditions are not covered and there is a 3-month waiting period on all new policies.
This means that lawyers will only represent you where the legal dispute occurs after the 3 months is up.
Uncontested divorces are covered and both you and your spouse enjoy cover.
Only counselling for uncontested divorces is covered. In other words, situations where you are attempting to resolve the dispute out of court. Also bear in mind that there is a 3-month waiting period before being allowed to claim on all new policies.
Court battles are excluded. In fact, Legalwise lumps all of the following under the term ‘matrimonial matters’:
- Maintenance disputes, and
- Custody disputes
All are excluded and both spouses are covered on this policy.
Much the same as Legalwise when it comes to divorce. They will provide advice when the divorce is uncontested, and where both parties agree to it. A 3-month waiting period applies from start date of the policy.
Once again both spouses are covered on this policy.
Scorpion Legal Protection
Their policy is the most comprehensive when it comes to the subject. The following are excluded:
- Marital, family, and relationship issues
- Civil or customary marriage disputes
- Custody disputes
- Maintenance disputes
- Disputes relating to engagement and promise to marry
- Litigation between ex partners
Both spouses are covered.
Getting back to the questions we asked at the beginning:
Is divorce something you can claim for?
It appears not; at least not if it’s going to get messy.
Is there any waiting period before being allowed to claim?
Yes, 3 months is the waiting period from the time you start your policy. Pre-existing issues are excluded as well as issues which arise during those 3 months.
Who gets represented and who doesn’t?
Both spouses are covered, but as we’ve seen above only uncontested divorces are covered, so this is really a non-issue.
It seems as if there’s no cheap solution to this problem. Indeed, the only advice we can offer is:
- Think once before getting married
- Think twice before getting divorced
- Think three times before taking out legal protection if the sole purpose for it is divorce
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