Insurance brokers, who represent the insured to transact insurance with, but not on behalf of insurers, often will try to make the process easy for the insured by filling out the application before asking the insured to sign it. It is a practice fraught with danger that can cause the insured to have no coverage at all and may make the broker a defendant in a major lawsuit. That’s just what occurred in a recent California case.

In December 2010, Jerry and Betty Douglas went to a business called Cost–U–Less Insurance where an InsZone Insurance Services employee assisted them in obtaining a Homeowners’ insurance policy with Fidelity National Insurance. The insurance paperwork Jerry Douglas signed consisted of three pages; the first page was a blank form. The employee at Cost–U–Less did not ask him any questions about the property.

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