Can an insurance company suddenly make demands on things that were not previously an issue?

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Can an insurance company suddenly make demands on things that were not previously an issue?

can a home insurance company 2 weeks after closing on a
house, demand home repairs minor cracks in driveway,
mildew on siding, and a small handrail on outside deck be
weeks? These things were disclosed nearly a month prior to
closing and were not an issue then.

Asked on March 26, 2018 under Insurance Law, Virginia

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

If they have already issued the policy, then they cannot demand these things at this time: the policy is a contract, and once issued, they cannot put additional requirements on the other party. That said:
1) When the current policy expires, they could certainly require this as a condition of renewal.
2) A failure to correct known issues can be negligent or unreasonably careless; if you are negligent, that can be grounds to deny a claim. So, for example, say that someone falls and is injured due to a loose, damaged, or defective handrail which you were told about; if you didn't fix the handrail despite the warning, the insurer could deny the claim.


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