is it legal for an agent to change your insurance coverage without your knowledge

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Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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UPDATED: Mar 9, 2015

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Insurance Question from Highlandale, MS

Asked on 03/09/2015

is it legal for an agent to change your insurance coverage without your knowledge upon renewal of homeowners insurance agent stated all coverage etc would be the same. just a reissue. a change was made reducing my coverage, a fire happened and now insurance company does not want to pay. is this legal?

Answer given on March 10, 2015

Your homeowner insurance agent is not allowed to make any changes to your insurance policy without your approval. The insurance company can make changes in the amount of coverage at the renewal date, usually an increase in coverage to keep your home properly insured for the renewal term. If you met with your agent and he/she said there would be no changes, then they should not have reduced your coverage.You, as the insurance purchaser, are expected to review your insurance policy, whether or not the agent said there would be no changes. Depending upon the renewal date and the date of loss, you may have some responsibility as to the amount of insurance.If your loss is a covered loss, I don’t see where the insurance company would completely deny coverage. If there is insufficient insurance coverage, they can reduce the amount they will pay for the loss, called coinsurance. Talk to your insurance agent, and the adjuster about this claim and try to work this out with them.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: These answers are for general information purposes only and are provided by the person answering and AS IS. It has not necessarily been reviewed by the management staff of nor is it binding any insurance agent, broker, or other insurance professional or any attorney or insurance company. Insurance laws, regulations and practices vary from state to state and insurance policies and practices differ from company to company, by type of policy, by state and locality and by type of insurance. Tiny variations in the facts, policy language or a detail not set forth in a question often can change the outcome or a professional's conclusion. Although has confirmed that the answer(s) was/were provided for the account of an experienced insurance professional, that professional may not be licensed in the state referred to in the question, and may not be experienced or up to date in the subject area. Unlike the answers provided here, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you consult a licensed insurance professional in your area or retain a licensed attorney listed on to represent you.

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