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Accident

An accident is an unexpected, unplanned event that causes injury or damage. It is something that happens by chance without an apparent or deliberate cause.

What is an Accident in Insurance?

In insurance terms, an accident is an unforeseen incident that results in harm, such as physical injury to a person or damage to property. These incidents are unintentional, meaning they were not planned or expected to occur. For something to be considered an accident in the context of insurance, it must be unexpected and not caused by deliberate actions.

Example: Imagine a restaurant owner who has a slippery floor after cleaning. If a customer enters the restaurant and slips, falling and injuring themselves, this is considered an accident. The restaurant owner did not intend for anyone to get hurt, making the incident unexpected and unintentional.

Key components of an accidents:

  • Unexpectedness: The event must be unexpected or unforeseen by the person involved. If an event is planned or expected, it cannot be classified as an accident.

  • Unintentionality: The result of the event, such as injury or damage, must be unintentional. If harm is caused on purpose, it does not qualify as an accident under insurance policies.

  • Suddenness: Accidents happen suddenly. There is typically a clear before and after — one moment everything is normal, and the next, the accident has occurred.

Types of Accidents Covered

These are examples of common accidents covered by insurance

Automobile Accidents

This is the most commonly thought-of type when accidents are mentioned. It includes collisions involving cars, trucks, motorcycles, and other vehicles.

Workplace Accidents

These accidents occur during the course of employment and can include everything from slipping on a wet floor to injuries sustained while operating machinery.

Home Accidents

These can range from a guest slipping on a rug in your home to a cooking fire that damages the kitchen.

Public Place Accidents

Accidents that happen in public places like parks, malls, or on the street fall into this category. Examples include tripping over a broken pavement or an injury from falling objects.

Exclusions and Limitations

While insurance policies cover a wide range of accidents, there are exclusions and limitations to be aware of:

  • Intentional Acts: If an act is done on purpose to cause damage or injury, it is generally not covered.
  • Illegal Activities: Accidents that occur while engaging in illegal activities are typically not covered.
  • Normal Wear and Tear: Damage that results from the gradual deterioration of property is not considered accidental and is excluded.
  • Specific Exclusions: Each policy has specific exclusions that define what is not covered. It is essential to read and understand these before an accident occurs.