NEWS Should insurance companies pay for death from depression after car crash? < Hospitals < Articles

Should insurance companies pay for death from depression after car crash? < Hospitals < Articles

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The insurance industry has refuted a court decision that insurers should pay for suicides caused by depression caused by car accidents.

In an “Insurance Law Review” published by the Korea Insurance Research Institute (KIRI) on Monday, insurers said they must first check whether depression is equivalent to injury before paying injury and death benefits.

People in the industry believe that although the court has defined depression as injury and made a legal judgment, this case should still be judged according to the injury standard defined in the insurance policy.

The complainant purchased the insurance company’s driver insurance, which included a special contract for death in a car accident, and the beneficiary was his mother. My mother was in a car accident while driving on a rainy night in 2017. After being trapped in the car for a long time, she suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder and depression before she was rescued. The mother eventually committed suicide.

The contract stipulated that the underwriters would pay 100 million won ($77,000) in insurance if subscribers were “injured directly as a result of a car accident.”

The claimant requires the company to pay the traffic accident death benefit. However, the company refused to pay the money, claiming that the mother could not be deemed to have died as a direct result of her injuries and that the underwriters would be exonerated if the subscriber committed suicide.

The lower court ruled that the mother’s death was not a direct result of the injuries caused by the traffic accident and dismissed the obligation to pay insurance benefits. It does not inevitably result from depression or occur in a state of mental or physical loss.

However, the Supreme Court overturned and remanded the lower court’s decision, despite what her doctors argued was “a traffic accident, depression, suicide.”

The dismissal and remand trial concluded on 25 November with mandatory mediation.

Lower courts and the Supreme Court have ruled that the mother’s depression constituted harm without a separate decision, the industry submission said. However, the paper states that the concept of injury as defined in the traffic casualty-specific contract must first be looked at.

“Injury usually refers to bodily injury, and injury in auto insurance refers to wounds. Therefore, according to the traffic casualty special contract, injury in this accident may mean bodily injury and injury,” said KIRI researcher Hwang Hyeon-ah.

Hwang noted that the ruling premised on depression as an injury in the special protocol for motorist insurance traffic accident death without further argument, which may raise concerns about confusion over the meaning of injury in accident insurance, auto insurance and motorist insurance compensation. future.

“Before judging whether the mother’s suicide was directly caused by her depression, they should first examine whether her depression constituted harm under Article 1 of the Special Regulations,” Huang added.

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