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(Apr 02, 2008) A major reform of the German laws governing insurance contracts was enacted on November 23, 2007 (Gesetz zur Reform des Versicherungsvertragsrechts, BUNDESGESETZBLATT I at 2631). It aims primarily at increasing consumer rights and providing more transparency of the contractual terms. The reform affects virtually all branches of contractual insurance except for health insurance and long-term care insurance. Insurers and their agents are now being held to a higher standard of care in informing potential clients about the insurance products they are considering for purchase. Insurance policies must be easily understandable, and they must disclose various costs. In addition, the insured are given a two-week period during which they may rescind a newly entered-into insurance contract; for life insurance, the rescission period is four weeks. The reform also provides some statutory guidance on the exclusions or limitations of liability of an indemnity insurer when the damage in the insured event was caused by the contributory negligence of the insured. Most of the reform became effective on January 1, 2008, and the remaining provisions will be become effective on July 1, 2008.

Author: Edith Palmer More by this author
Topic: Consumer protection More on this topic
Jurisdiction: Germany More about this jurisdiction

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Last updated: 04/02/2008