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Acts of God 101

MoneyTips

“Acts of God”, for insurance purposes, are defined as events that occur through natural causes and could not be avoided through the use of caution and preventative measures. In essence, the phrase “Acts of God” refers to natural disasters.

The phrase generally brings to mind hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes, hail, or floods. However, the lines can be fuzzier than most people realize.

For example, consider fires. An accidental fire in your home is not considered an Act of God because it could have been prevented, either by someone’s actions in starting the fire accidentally or poor workmanship during construction of the house. A fire caused by a lightning strike that consumes multiple homes, such as often occurs in the West, would be an Act of God. What happens when a similar fire is an act of arson?

The key is whether a human or humans could reasonably be considered at fault – at least until insurance companies find a way to sue God.

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