There’s a range of legal expenses cover available, but before we get into that, let’s explain what legal expenses is, and why you should thing about adding this to your policy (don’t worry, we’ll weigh up the pros and cons).
What is legal expenses insurance?
Legal expenses insurance is designed to protect you against the potential, future cost of legal action, whether it is brought by you, or against you by another person.
For car insurance, legal expenses insurance is usually sold for each car, which means you would only be able to make a claim for incidents or accidents affecting the car specified on the policy. For multi-car policies, you’d need to take out a policy for each vehicle. The policy will cover the cost of making a claim for things like medical expenses, compensation, uninsured losses etc.
For home insurance, you could be covered for personal injury disputes, for example if a neighbour tried suing you for an injury that occurred whilst at your property. It can also cover the cost of going to court for employment disputes or whether you have faulty goods.
Most of the legal expenses insurance policies are an additional add-on to your policy, although you can buy standalone policies
Pros of taking out legal expenses cover
If you’re needing to go to court, say for example, you’ve been involved in a ‘non-fault’ accident and want to recover your costs, the legal team will carry out all the necessary work involved in getting your case ready for court, collating evidence etc. Depending on the situation, the policy would likely cover all of the legal feel involved – the cost of your solicitors or barristers and any court fees.
Plus, you may get access to free legal helpline which could be a very useful source of information and advice.
Changes to the Whiplash legislation.
We wrote an article earlier this year about the changes to claims for whiplash. For any personal injury claims valued under £5,000, solicitors can no longer recover the fees for this so you can look to submit your claim via the OIC portal yourself, but the importance of legal cover remains paramount to ensure you are guided through the process with quality advice.
But by having legal expenses cover in place, providing the claim happened after the policy was taken out, you’d get help with your claim and it would cover the costs involved in going to court.
Potential cons of having a legal protection policy.
Like any insurance policy that you take out, you may not need to make a claim against it. But it’s there to protect you against potential financial losses. What you’ll need to weigh up is the potential expenses you’d incur if someone took you to court, or if you wanted to take someone to court to recoup costs.
Most legal expenses policies have a claims limit of £50,000 to £100,000 which may not cover the cost of complex or drawn-out claims, so it’s always worth speaking to an insurance expert to find out what’s covered.
Need someone to talk to?
Our friendly, knowledgeable insurance advisors are there to help with any queries you have about a legal policy you already hold, or if you’re looking to take out a policy and need to know more. Find your local branch on our website and give them a call.