In All Should Use Greater Care Handling Underwriting Information, insurance customs expert witness Akos Swierkiewicz writes:
The need for greater care with handling of underwriting information is not limited to applicants and brokers. Insurers should ask all pertinent questions in the application form because, in many instances, the applicant may be aware of important underwriting information but does not disclose it simply because it was not asked.
Application questions should be limited to seeking factual information rather than eliciting the opinion or judgment of the applicant. For example, when the applicant answered “no” to a professional liability application question as to whether future claims were expected, based on the applicant’s opinion or judgment, the insurer concluded that the response was a misrepresentation or omission just because a claim did occur.