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Legal expenses and assistance

A legal expenses insurance is often added to a travel policy. There will be included, cover for legal costs to pursue a civil action for compensation against someone else who causes you bodily injury, illness or death.

Should you require legal representation an insurer will require to be in complete control of all steps of the legal process. This will often mean

  1. Solicitors or agents must be appointed by the insurer, often from a panel but they will have expertise to pursue your claim.
  2. You will be required to follow all of the appointed agent’s advice and provide any information and assistance required within a reasonable timescale.
  3. You must advise the insurer of any offers of settlement made by the person you are claiming against and you will not be able to accept any offer without the insurer’s permission.
  4. The insurer may decide a point at which your legal case cannot usefully be pursued further. Should this happen then no further claim can be made under the policy.
  5. The insurer may include a claim for our legal costs and other related expenses.
  6. The insurer may, at their own expense, take proceedings in your name to recover compensation from any third party for any legal costs incurred under this policy. You will be required to give any assistance needed. Should a claim for legal costs be successful this amount recovered will belong to the insurer.

When you look to claim under you legal assistance insurance there may be some areas that will not be covered.

Typically there will be no liability for the following:

  1. An insurer will decide on the merits of any claim that is to be pursued and if there are insufficient prospects of reasonable compensation this will not be covered.
  2. Any claim for legal costs and expenses incurred in pursuit of any claim against a travel agent, tour operator, carrier, the insurer/provider, the Medical Assistance Helpline or their agents, someone you were travelling with, a person related to you, or another insured person.
  3. Legal costs and expenses incurred prior to the insurers written acceptance of the case.
  4. Any claim where the legal costs and expenses are likely to be greater than the anticipated amount of compensation.
  5. Any claim where legal costs and expenses are based directly on the amount of compensation awarded (for example a Contingency Fee Agreement or a no win no fee agreement).
  6. Legal costs and expenses incurred in any claim which is capable of being pursued under a Conditional Fee Agreement.

Legal assistance insurance is a valuable addition to any travel insurance policy and your legal expense insurer should be contacted as soon as you require advice and help in a given situation that may give rise to a claim under this section of the policy.

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