Natural catastrophes insurance in French Law


Through a number of decades of bad experience with losses from natural disasters and reluctance of the insurers to provide cover for those risks, France has introduced insurers’ duty to cover natural catastrophes in property, motor hull and agriculture insurances, and assigned the state reinsurance company to cover liabilities of the insurance companies in the last instance, on voluntary basis for insurance companies, which is in line with the principle of free competition.
Paper deals with the legal aspects of the French system of natural disasters insurance structured through four security levels. Thorough attention has been directed on the system of indemnifying losses due to natural disasters from the Code des Assurances, particularly about the perils and property insured, insurance terms, sanctions for breaching the law, insured losses, definition of the natural disaster and cover trigger, about fixing and displaying premium for natural risks and about catastrophe reinsurance through the Caisse Centrale de Réassurance. Author used legalistic and logical methods. Author concludes that such designed system of the financial protection against the natural disasters has brought adequate, though not complete and financially sound, protection of the French citizen property and control over fixing premiums and distribution of the financial security.