What to do about members in household not listed on my insurance?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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What to do about members in household not listed on my insurance?

I was involved in a car accident involving just me and my dog; there were no other cars or property damage. Upon contacting the insurance company, they told me that on the original insurance I sign up for, that I never said I had kids living with me, so due to that they would open an investigation and deny claim. I explained that my children are 25, 22 and 15. I know that we had a conversation about my children, that I did not list them on the insurance because I mainly drive my car, they do not. I asked about the 15 year old and when to add him. We agreed that I would call back to add him when he started driving. Therefore, I know we had a conversation about my household. They are saying they did not have the conversation and they are going to deny claim based on that technicality. It’s basically my word vs their word. I don’t know what to do from here.

Asked on February 4, 2019 under Insurance Law, California


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

You can try suing your insurer for the money due on the claim, for "breach of contract" or not honoring the contractual (an insurance policy is a contract) obligation to pay this claim, but you will have difficulty winning: whether you feel it was justified or not, you did fail to list household members on the insurance, which means you paid a lesser premium than you should have (the premium for 3 drivers, two of whom are young adults, is higher than that for one presumably middle-aged driver); therefore, you effectively committed fraud on the insurer which a court use as grounds or justification to not require them to pay. For future reference, you MUST list all drivers living in your home, even if, as a practial matter they rarely use your car.

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