Recently, the devastating Morbi accident happened in Gujarat, killing more than 140 people, and dozens of people are still missing after falling into the river. Many wonder if the incident can be attributed to human error or if it was an unavoidable event beyond conscious intervention.
Many people describe the destruction of the Gujarat Bridge as an “act of God”, while others believe it is the fault of the concerned authorities involved in the restoration works of the bridge.
Authorities have focused their attention on a private company called Oreva, which is believed to be responsible for the mishap. A criminal investigation has been opened against the company.
This debate erupted after the opposing party called the Morbi incident an “act of fraud”. At the same time, many have claimed that bridges and roads have been destroyed in India due to environmental and climatic issues and acts of God.
What is the “case of force majeure” clause?
The principle of tort law underlies the defense of “force majeure”. “Act of God” is a term used by insurance companies and in legal terminology to classify a natural event beyond human control. In legal language, it is called a “natural catastrophic event” for which no one can be held responsible. It is a crushing defeat that occurs immediately due to natural cause and could not have been avoided with careful, diligent and careful planning.
The Covid-19 pandemic, which has slowed India’s growth, can be called an extraordinary “act of God”. According to Salmond, the clause includes any act that humans cannot avoid by exercising reasonable care. Such mishaps are the result of organic forces and are incompatible with human action.
In short, it is an accident or incident without any human action or purpose, such as thunderstorms, tsunamis or earthquakes.
“Vis Major” is another term for “Act of God”. Vis major is a Latin term that refers to a “superior force” that results in damage that is neither caused nor entirely preventable by man.
Act of God: through the legal prism
Insurance companies use the “force majeure” clause in various situations. Many general conditions of insurance are specific when it comes to cases of force majeure. In contractual agreements, such as insurance contracts, the clause may be added to an exception to liability.
Many insurance companies and providers do not cover losses caused by natural disasters. Therefore, insurers should check their policies for force majeure coverages and exclusions.
Comprehensive auto insurance typically includes coverage for acts of God. People should buy separate flood and earthquake insurance for damages that aren’t usually covered by standard homeowner policies.
According to the consultants, the application process in such scenarios is much more convenient than in wellness or life insurance policies, as the document requirements are relaxed.
Insureds need only inform the insurer of the loss, and the consultant will be dispatched. In addition, since the cause of the loss is generally recognized as force majeure, insurance companies generally hire many consultants to assess the loss and quickly settle claims.
The act of God is defined as something opposed to the act of man. The actions of God are subject to different laws in each country, and some countries do not recognize the concept at all.