Risk prevention and insurance. Reaching or trespassing the insurance boundaries?

Katarzyna Malinowska

DOI: https://doi.org/10.33995/wu2023.4.1


Insurance presents a well-recognized preventive value. However, in recent times when it comes to the preventive function of insurance, it is about much more and this can be heard in voices of increasing numbers of experts and insurers. Three fundamental motivators prompted the pursuit of this study: (1) dynamic shifts in the risk landscape, (2) emerging technologies facilitating risk prevention, and (3) a perceived regulatory gap in addressing societal needs and technological potentials.

Legal considerations related to the utilization of new technologies in insurance have been extensively discussed, albeit selectively. These discussions have focused on issues such as the policyholder’s risk declaration, the potential use of sensitive data for risk assessment, and the automated distribution process (robo-advice). No comprehensive legal analysis of the preventive function of insurance in this context is available. There is a noticeable research and publication gap that should be filled by holistic considerations on risk prevention in insurance, both on the level of private law (insurance contract, duties of the insurance distributors, as well as public law, concerning the supervision over applying the risk prevention measures by the insurance carriers. Finding a new approach that could address the legal challenges is, according to the author, of great importance for the development of insurance as a protection tool for the most imminent social risks. The objectives included in the paper include showing the impact of new technologies on risk prevention, as well as analysis of what the role of the insurer in risk prevention may and should be from the legal perspective, including the potential change of roles in performing the insurance contract. The objectives of the paper involve several aspects, such as whether prevention has the potential to become a distinguished (re-) insurance service, as well as what the boundaries of the insurance contract and insurance business in terms of its compensatory and preventive function are.


prevention, loss mitigation, good faith, risk management, insurance contract


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