Impact of Riders/Endorsements on Auto Insurance Policies

A rider is a paper attached to a document that amends the document. In an automobile insurance policy, a rider can modify the conditions of the insurance policy. It can increase or decrease the policy's benefits. It can add exclusions from coverage, like a crime exclusion clause. The use of the rider means that the entire policy does not have to be rewritten if a change needs to be made. Riders are also known as endorsements, slips, or rubber stamps.

A rider can be attached to a policy at the time it is issued or after it is issued. When a rider is attached to a policy at the time it is issued by the insurance company, the rider is part of the policy. Delivery of a policy with the rider attached is adequate notice to the insured of the rider's provisions. When a rider is made after a policy is issued, it must be done after a written request by the insured. The rider must be signed by the insured and the insurance company.

If a rider conflicts with provisions in the insurance policy, the rider usually prevails. However if the writer contains no signatures or other evidence that it was separately negotiated, conflicting provisions could be construed against the insurance company. Some courts attempt to reconcile the rider's language with the insurance policy.