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What is Section 45 of The Insurance Act, 1938? What does It Say?

Sec 45 of The Insurance Act, 1938

According to the act, no life insurance policy can be called into question on grounds of misstatement or wrong disclosure after two years of the policy coming into force. However, if the insurer is able to prove that the claim was fraudulent, it need not be passed.

The provision of Section 45 of the Insurance Act 1938 shall be as amended from time to time. The simplified version of this provision is as under:

Provisions regarding policy not being called into question in terms of Section 45 of the Insurance Act, 1938, are as follows:

No Policy of Life Insurance shall be called in question on any ground whatsoever after expiry of 3 yrs from

  • the date of issuance of policy or
  • the date of commencement of risk or
  • the date of revival of policy or
  • the date of rider to the policy whichever is

On the ground of fraud, a policy of Life Insurance may be called in question within 3 years from

  • the date of issuance of policy or
  • the date of commencement of risk or
  • the date of revival of policy or
  • the date of rider to the policy whichever is

For this, the insurer should communicate in writing to the insured or legal representative or nominee or assignees of insured, as applicable, mentioning the ground and materials on which such decision is based.

Fraud means any of the following acts committed by insured or by his agent, with the intent to deceive the insurer or to induce the insurer to issue a life insurance policy:

  • The suggestion, as a fact of that which is not true and which the insured does not believe to be true;
  • The active concealment of a fact by the insured having knowledge or belief of the fact;
  • Any other act fitted to deceive; and
  • Any such act or omission as the law specifically declares to be

Mere silence is not fraud unless, depending on circumstances of the case, it is the duty of the insured or his agent keeping silence to speak or silence is in itself equivalent to

No Insurer shall repudiate a life insurance policy on the ground of Fraud if the insured / beneficiary can prove that the misstatement was true to the best of his knowledge and there was no deliberate intention to suppress the factor that such misstatement of or Suppression of material fact is within the knowledge of the insurer. The onus of disproving is upon the policyholder, if alive, or beneficiaries.

Life insurance Policy can be called in question within 3 years on the ground that any statement of or suppression of a fact material to expectancy of life of the insured was incorrectly made in the proposal or other document basis which policy was issued or revived or rider issued. For this, the insurer should communicate in writing to the insured or legal representative or nominee or assignees of insured, as applicable, mentioning the ground and materials on which decision to repudiate the policy of life insurance is based.

In case of repudiation is on the ground of misstatement and not on fraud, the premium collected on policy till the date of repudiation shall be paid to the insured or legal representative or nominee or assignees of insured, within a period of 90 days from the date of repudiation.

Fact shall not be considered material unless it has a direct bearing on the risk undertaken by the insurer. The onus is on the insurer to show that if the insurer had been aware of the said fact, no life insurance policy would have been issued to the insured.

The insurer can call for proof of age at any time if he is entitled to do so and no policy shall be deemed to be called in question merely because the terms of the policy are adjusted on subsequent proof of age of life insured. So, this Section will not be applicable for questioning age or adjustment based on proof of age submitted

Also, read this – Top Reasons Why Insurance is Important in Our Everyday Life?

Disclaimer:

This is not a comprehensive list of Section 45 of the Insurance Act, 1938, and only a simplified version prepared for general information. Policyholders are advised to refer to Section 45 of the Insurance Act, 1938, for complete and accurate details.

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