Insurance Law


Welcome to LawShelf’s course on insurance law.  This course looks at the rules that govern many kinds of insurance and introduces you to the purposes that insurance fulfills and the regulatory landscape against which it is governed.

This is an introductory level course and no prior knowledge of law or the insurance industry is required.

The course starts with an overview of insurance, its purposes and the parties to an insurance contract. We also look at the origins of federal regulation of the insurance industry and discuss the concurrent state regulatory activities that are also binding on insurance agreements.

Module two looks at various insurance coverage issues and goes through a litany of cases that discuss the applications of these rules. The rules we’ll discuss include waiver, estoppel and the parol evidence rule, three contract law doctrines that impact insurance contracts. We’ll also look at the reasonable expectations doctrine, which has been used by courts to protect the reasonable expectations of insureds. We’ll discuss a series of cases to which these doctrines have been applied and then focus on acts that cannot be insured against, due to illegality or public policy.

In module three, we will look at the procedure for making claims on insurance. We’ll look at the notice of loss, which typically must be filed in the wake of the insured event and also discuss other documents typically prepared with claims, including proofs of loss and appraisals. We will also focus on the responsibilities of the insured in cooperating with the insurance company’s investigation and to defend covered lawsuits that are defensible.

In module four, we turn to life insurance, first focusing on the various types of life insurance and the requirement that the policy owner have an insurable interest in the insured. We’ll also look at the role of the beneficiary and at a series of cases in which courts had to determine beneficiaries where their identities were unclear. We will also look at life insurance coverage of suicide and the typical provisions and state laws that govern such.

Finally, in module five, we’ll focus on a litany of other types of insurance and the unique rules that apply to each of them. These include fire insurance, casualty insurance, Marine insurance, automobile insurance and general liability insurance.

Once you complete this course, you will have a firmly rooted understanding of the landscape of insurance law and we hope you will use this course as a springboard to learn more about the specific type of insurance questions that are most relevant to you.

Best of luck and we welcome your feedback.


What is a video-course?

A LawShelf video-course is an in-depth series of presentations on a discreet legal topic. LawShelf video-courses focus on practical legal information and applications and are each designed to familiarize the viewer with a legal topic quickly and efficiently.

Who should take a video-course?

Our video courses are designed for professionals such as attorneys, paralegals, corporate officers and financial professionals, as well as laypeople looking to deepen their knowledge of particular areas of law. The courses allow you to acquire the specific knowledge and skills that you need without the expense and time commitment of going “back to school” for a degree. 

How do I learn?

Video courses are divided into 5 or 6 modules.  Each module contains a video lesson (usually about 15 minutes long) and a series of self-test questions that you can use to practice and make sure that you understand the material.

How do I complete a video-course?

To complete a video-course, you must pass a 10-question multiple-choice examination by scoring 70% or higher.  The questions on the exam are randomly selected from the self-test question sets for the various modules. You can retake an exam as many times as you need to, though you will not get the same questions each time since the questions are drawn from an exam bank.

How long will it take me to complete a video-course?

Between watching the modules, doing the self-test practice questions, reviewing the material and taking the final exam, we estimate that completing a video-course requires a time investment of 4-5 hours.  The courses are designed to get straight to the point. We’re cognizant that your time is valuable, and we condense the information you need to know to comprehensively cover a subject into as little time as practical.

Is there limit to how many video-courses I can take or complete?

No. A LawShelf subscription enables you to access any and all LawShelf content, including all video-courses. You can take courses as quickly or slowly as your time allows.

Do I receive any recognition for completing a video-course?

Once you complete the course by passing the final exam, you will be awarded a digital badge to display as evidence of your training and accomplishment.

How will a digital badge help me? 

Modern educational trends are moving away from traditional classroom-based course completion models and towards skills-based education. Employers today care more about skills than ever before. LawShelf digital badges conform to the Open Badge standard and are verifiable records of your skills that can easily be shared online.

How long do I retain access to the course materials?

You retain access the modules and take the final exam as long as you are a subscriber to LawShelf.

Regulation of Insurance - Module 1 of 5

Insurance Coverage Issues - Module 2 of 5

Insurance Claims - Module 3 of 5

Life Insurance - Module 4 of 5

Types of Insurance - Module 5 of 5

Final Exam only needs to be taken by those seeking to earn the Digital Badge credentials for this course.