Legal expenses insurance Should I buy legal expenses insurance?

Car accident

Car-related legal expenses insurance often covers the policyholder, named drivers and passengers, so there's usually no point in couples doubling up on cover

Should I buy legal expenses insurance?

While the claims process, in our view, has some flaws, LEI can still prove worthwhile. For many people, taking out cover is valuable as they would not be able to meet the high costs of pursuing a claim on their own.

Be careful not to over-insure, though. Some of the home cover LEI policies classify 'you' as being 'the person named as the policyholder in the schedule, their partner and members of their family.' Likewise, car insurance LEI often covers the policyholder and named drivers (along with passengers). With policies such as these, there's no point in couples doubling up on cover.

Legal expenses insurance checklist

It’s worth considering LEI, but there are things you need to think about before you buy:

  • Are you already covered? Before buying LEI, check whether your car and house insurance policies already include it. You may also get free legal advice if you are a member of some professional bodies or motoring organisations, or a trade union.
  • Will you win? Insurers usually insist that there is a reasonable chance of your claim being successful before they will take it on.
  • Size of claim: Some insurers won't take on a case if the amount you are claiming is likely to be less than your case costs. So if you are claiming £500 but your insurer thinks it would cost £1,000 to settle the case, it may turn you down.
  • Time limit: There is often a time limit on making a claim - the length will differ according to then type of claim.
  • Offers to settle: Usually you must accept any reasonable offer to settle. If you choose to continue with the case against advice, you may have to bear any subsequent costs.

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