If 4 years ago I filed a claim regarding a lost ring but have now found it, what should I do?

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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If 4 years ago I filed a claim regarding a lost ring but have now found it, what should I do?

I had a personal articles policy for my engagement ring that I filed a claim against because I had lost the ring. They paid us for the amount listed on the appraisal, which was $12,200, and the policy was canceled. However, I recently moved and in the process I discovered the ring. If the claim was filed back in October of 2012 is the ring now my property if found since they paid the claim and the policy was cancelled or is there a statute of limitations that applies?

Asked on January 23, 2016 under Insurance Law, Arizona


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 7 years ago | Contributor

The ring belongs to the insurer, if they paid for it; alternately, you may be able to repay the money and keep the ring--but you can't do both. The law does *not* let you keep property for which you were paid by an insurer. The problem for you is that the statute of limitations is 6 years, so if this was in 2012, they have 2 more years during which they could sue you for one or the other--and worse: knowingly keeping the ring when you'd told the insurer it was lost and been paid is insurance fraud, and you could face jail time.
Canceling the policy is irrelevant, because the policy was clearly in force at the time--that's why they paid you.
You are advised to contact the insurer and explain that you just found the ring and inquire into whether they want the ring or want the money (and if the money, if under the circumstances, you can set up a payment plan).

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