Force Majeure

Medical insurance policies typically exclude coverage for costs related to treatment and/or medical evacuations and/or repatriations that arise directly or indirectly from force majeure events, such as natural disasters, acts of war, or other unpredictable, unforeseeable, or unavoidable circumstances. These events could include, but are not limited to, earthquakes, severe weather, fires, floods, landslides, subsidence, and any other act or event that is outside of the insurer’s reasonable control. The force majeure clause is a common feature in contracts, including insurance contracts, which is intended to release both parties from liability or obligation when an extraordinary event or circumstance beyond the control of the parties prevents one or both parties from fulfilling their obligations under the contract.

It is important to note that while most force majeure clauses do not excuse a party’s non-performance entirely, they only suspend it for the duration of the force majeure. It is also important to note that force majeure is distinct from an act of God, which is a separate legal concept. In practice, acts of God are considered to be natural disasters or other events that are caused by natural causes that are beyond human control. An act of God is generally not considered to be something that could have been prevented by human action or foreseen by human planning.

It is also essential to understand the difference between force majeure and an act of God because it could have a different impact on the insurance policy. While force majeure might suspend the parties’ obligations, an act of God might be considered as an exclusion of coverage.