Auto, health… From when can your insurance be terminated for non-payment?

Forgetfulness, financial difficulties, or quite simply refusal… There are many reasons for not paying your insurance premiums. But the consequences are strictly identical: the payment of penalties for delay or legal interest when the contract specifies it, and especially the termination of the contract. As the insurance mediator relates in a practical case that he had to deal with this year, the insurer is free to terminate the cover he markets if he has complied with the deadlines imposed by article L.113-3 of the Insurance Code.

When your insurance sends you a notice of expiry, it asks you to pay the contributions for the coming year. This dispatch is carried out a few weeks before the entry into force of the contract. If you do not pay the amount due “within 10 days of its due date”, the professional is entitled to send you a formal notice to pay. The date of acknowledgment of receipt being authentic, you then have 30 days to pay the amount. Beyond that, your guarantees may be suspended, pending a possible settlement. Worse: if you let 10 additional days pass, your insurer is entitled to permanently terminate your coverage.

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Possible heavy termination indemnities

This is the mishap that happened in 2019 to this individual who demanded, in vain, from his insurer that he put the contract back into force, even though he had not paid his contributions. The latter had the possibility, but in no case the obligation. The insurer nevertheless granted, on a voluntary basis, a refund of the premium for the period after the termination. A gesture deemed “satisfactory” by the mediator.

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In the event of a dispute, is it possible to contact the opposing insurer directly?

Be careful, if you are in this situation, you will not only have to pay your debt, but you may also pay a heavy penalty: “The contract may provide for a termination indemnity clause for non-payment of premiums. This penalty cannot exceed six months of contributions”, confirms the Mediator Arnaud Chneiweiss. And of course, you find yourself without an insurer and will have to hurry to find another one. Remember that in France, covering your vehicle is compulsory. Tenants and co-owners also have the obligation to insure their accommodation.

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