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Updated 2013−14 Wis. Stats. Published and certified under s. 35.18. January 1, 2015.

631.07

INSURANCE CONTRACTS GENERALLY

Updated 13−14 Wis. Stats.

2

Insurable interest and consent. (1) INSURABLE INTEREST. No insurer may knowingly issue a policy to a person 631.07

without

an

insurable

interest

in

the

subject

of

the

insurance.

policy nor constitute a defense for the insurer unless the mistake was due to misrepresentation or concealment by the owner of the property or someone representing the owner in procuring the

(2) CONSENT IN LIFE AND DISABILITY INSURANCE. Except under sub. (3), no insurer may knowingly issue an individual life or dis- ability insurance policy to a person other than the one whose life or health is at risk unless the latter has given written consent to the issuance of the policy. Consent may be expressed by knowingly signing the application for the insurance with knowledge of the nature of the document, or in any other reasonable way.

(3) CASES WHERE CONSENT IS UNNECESSARY OR MAY BE GIVEN BY ANOTHER. (a) Consent unnecessary. A life or disability insur- ance policy may be taken out without consent in any of the follow- ing cases:

1. A person may obtain insurance on a dependent who does not have legal capacity.

2. A creditor may at the expense of the creditor obtain life or

disability insurance on the debtor in an amount reasonably related to the amount of the debt.

3. A person may obtain a life or disability insurance policy on members of the person’s family living with or dependent on the person.

3m. A person may obtain a disability insurance policy on a child placed for adoption, as defined in s. 632.896 (1) (c), with the person.

4. A person may obtain a disability insurance policy on others that would merely indemnify against expenses the policyholder would be legally or morally obligated to pay.

(am) Insurance for persons in international public service. The commissioner may promulgate rules permitting issuance of insurance for a limited term on the life or health of a person serving outside the continental United States in the public service of the United States, provided the policyholder is closely related by blood, marriage or adoption to the person whose life or health is insured.

(b) Consent given by another. Consent may be given by another in the following cases:

policy, or unless the company would not have issued or continued the policy if it had known the truth.

History: 1975 c. 375, 421; 1979 c. 89; 1989 a. 187 s. 29.

631.09

Knowledge and acts of agents. (1) IMPUTATION

OF KNOWLEDGE. An insurer is to the risk or which breaches a

deemed to know any fact material condition of the policy, if the agent

who

bound

the

insurer

or

issued

the

policy

or

transmitted

the

application

to

the

insurer

knew

it

at

the

time

the

agent

acted,

or

if

thereafter any of the insurer’s is then dealing as agent of the

agents with whom insurer learns it in

the the

policyholder course of the

agent’s dealing with the policyholder, to a policy written by the insurer.

and

knows

that

it

pertains

(2) ACTS OF AGENT. A failure by any policyholder or insured to perform an act required to perfect his or her rights under the policy, or failure to perform the act in the time and manner pre- scribed, does not affect the insurer’s obligations under the policy if the failure was caused by an act, statement or representation or omission to perform a duty by an agent of the insurer who has apparent authority, whether or not the agent was within the actual scope of the agent’s authority.

(3) EFFECT OF NOTICE TO AGENT. Notice given by or on behalf of the policyholder or insured to any authorized agent of the insurer with particulars sufficient to identify the policy is notice to the insurer.

(4) COLLUSION. Subsections (1) and (2) do not apply if the agent and the policyholder or insured acted in collusion to deceive or defraud the insurer, or if the policyholder or insured knew the agent was acting beyond the scope of the agent’s authority.

(5) GROUP POLICYHOLDER NOT AGENT. No person is an agent of an insurer merely because the person is a policyholder of a group insurance policy.

(6) LIABILITY UNDER COMMON LAW. This section does not diminish any liability of the insurer that would exist under com- mon law.

1. A parent, a guardian of the person, or a person having legal custody as defined in s. 48.02 (12) may consent to the issuance of a policy on a dependent child.

2. A grandparent may consent to the issuance of life or dis- ability insurance on a grandchild.

3. A court of general jurisdiction may give consent on ex parte application on the showing of any facts the court considers suffi- cient to justify such insurance.

History: 1975 c. 375, 421.

Absent proof that an agent knew, or should have known, of financial problems of a reinsurer from whom the agent procured insurance, the agent is not liable when the reinsurer later becomes insolvent. Master Plumbers Mut. Liab. v. Cormany & Bird, 79 Wis. 2d 308, 255 N.W.2d 533 (1977).

When an insured elected to have open heart surgery after an agent indicated that the insurer would probably pay the bills, that action was sufficient reliance to estop the insurer from denying coverage. Nolden v. Mutual Benefit Life Insurance Co. 80 Wis. 2d 353, 259 N.W.2d 75 (1977).

(4) EFFECT OF LACK OF INSURABLE INTEREST OR CONSENT. No insurance policy is invalid merely because the policyholder lacks insurable interest or because consent has not been given, but a court with appropriate jurisdiction may order the proceeds to be paid to someone other than the person to whom the policy is desig- nated to be payable, who is equitably entitled thereto, or may create a constructive trust in the proceeds or a part thereof, subject to terms and conditions of the policy other than those relating to insurable interest or consent.

History: 1975 c. 373, 375, 422; 1977 c. 354 s. 101; 1989 a. 336; 1999 a. 85; 1999 a. 162 s. 23; 2001 a. 38.

631.11

Representations, warranties and conditions.

(1) EFFECT OF warranty. No

NEGOTIATIONS FOR CONTRACT. (a) Statement or statement, representation or warranty made by a

person

other

than

the

insurer

or

an

agent

of

the

insurer

in

the

negotiation tions under

for the

an insurance contract affects the insurer’s obliga- policy unless it is stated in any of the following:

1. The policy.

2. A written application signed by the person, provided that a copy of the written application is made a part of the policy by attachment or endorsement.

Cross−reference: See also s. Ins 2.45, Wis. adm. code.

The proceeds of a casualty insurance policy purchased by a land contract vendee that named the vendor as mortgagee were properly awarded to the vendor under sub. (4) when, following confirmation of a strict foreclosure judgment against the vendee, the insured premises were destroyed by fire. Disrud v. Arnold, 167 Wis. 2d 177, 482 N.W.2d 114 (Ct. App. 1992).

A stockholder may have an insurable interest in corporate property. Heyden v. Safeco Title Insurance Co. 175 Wis. 2d 508, 498 N.W.2d 905 (Ct. App. 1993).

631.08

Mistakes in contracts. (1) GENERAL.

Except as

otherwise provided in chs. 600 to 646 and 655, law applies to mistakes in insurance contracts.

general

contract

3. A written communication provided by the insurer to the insured within 60 days after the effective date of the policy.

(b) Misrepresentation or breach of affirmative warranty. No misrepresentation, and no breach of an affirmative warranty, that is made by a person other than the insurer or an agent of the insurer in the negotiation for or procurement of an insurance contract constitutes grounds for rescission of, or affects the insurer’s obligations under, the policy unless, if a misrepresentation, the person knew or should have known that the representation was false, and unless any of the following applies:

(2) PERSON TO WHOM PROCEEDS PAYABLE IN PROPERTY INSUR- ANCE. Mistake in designating the person to whom the insurance is payable in a policy of property insurance does not void the

1. The insurer relies on the misrepresentation or affirmative warranty and the misrepresentation or affirmative warranty is either material or made with intent to deceive.

2013−14 Wisconsin Statutes updated through 2013 Wis. Act 380 and all Supreme Court Orders entered before Jan. 1, 2015. Pub- lished and certified under s. 35.18. Changes effective after Jan. 1, 2015 are designated by NOTES. (Published 1−1−15)

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