What Is an Insurance Declaration Page?

how does an insurance declaration work?

The Balance / Sabrina Jiang

DEFINITION
An insurance declaration page sums up what is in an insurance policy. It comes at the start of your paperwork. It outlines items like your deductible, coverage, discounts, and more.

Definition and Examples of an Insurance Declaration Page

The insurance declaration page is part of your insurance policy. It comes at the front of your paperwork and sums up the key data about your insurance.

  • Alternate name: Policy declarations page, declarations page
  • Acronyms: DEC page, dec page

For example, you would receive a declarations page when you buy a new car insurance policy.

How Does an Insurance Declaration Page Work?

The insurance declaration page is part of your policy. You will get it once your policy is issued. It comes after the binder of insurance and should have the same data that was sent to you in the binder of insurance.

Despite the name, the document may be longer than a single page. Depending on the details of your coverage, it may span many pages. You should get a new page every time you buy or renew a policy.

Note

The binder of insurance is a temporary document that outlines your coverage. It can be shown as proof of insurance until you receive your policy documents. Those will include your dec page.

The dec page is a key part of your policy. It shows:

  • The main coverages that lead to how a claim will be paid 
  • The limits for each section
  • The premiums charged
  • Who is insured and what is covered

The dec page contains all of the key information about your contract, including what or whom is covered, how to file for a claim, and other details. You should review the dec page in detail to make sure that it is correct.

Common problems found on insurance dec pages may include:

  • Errors such as a typo in a name or address
  • The wrong type of coverage (for instance, a named perils policy instead of an open perils policy)
  • Incorrect deductibles
  • Incorrect coverage amounts
  • Missing riders
  • Missing discounts

All of the things you asked for or agreed to when accepting your new policy should be on the dec page. Any errors can make it hard to file a claim. If you find any, contact your agent to have them fixed.

Once you are done looking over your policy, keep your dec page in a safe place, as it is part of your contract.

Note

The declaration page is followed by the policy wording, which defines the terms on the dec page and how they apply in a claim. The policy wording will help you understand what each section of your policy means. It will also tell you how it applies to your property.

What Does an Insurance Declaration Page Cover?

An insurance declaration page will sum up the key data from your policy, which should include:

  • The policy number
  • Name and address of the policyholder 
  • Whom and what is covered
  • The insurer name, address, and contact info
  • What type of coverage the policy includes 
  • Limits and deductibles
  • Endorsements
  • How long the policy is valid for
  • Discounts and surcharges
  • Cost of the insurance, often divided into payments
  • Other named insureds, such as banks
  • Limits of liability

Many declaration pages will also include the process of how to file a claim. If this is not on the dec page, it should be listed in a separate part of your paperwork.

Why Do You Need an Insurance Declaration Page?

In some cases, it's helpful to have your insurance dec page on hand. In others, it's required.

For instance, when you shop for insurance, having your dec page on hand makes it easy to compare products, and when you switch insurers, your new company will want proof of your current coverage.

If you have a loan on any insured property, the lender may require a copy of the dec page. For instance, your auto lender may ask for it, because the dec page will say what and how much coverage your car has, while your insurance ID card will not. The dec page will also show the lender who is listed as loss payee and/or additional insured on the policy. The mortgage company on your home may require the dec page for your homeowner's insurance as well.

Many times, your insurer is the one that sends your dec page to the lender, but sometimes it gets lost, and you will need to provide a copy.

Key Takeaways

  • An insurance declaration page sums up what is in an insurance policy.
  • It comes at the start of policy paperwork and contains information such as your deductible, coverage, discounts, and more.
  • You should check your dec page for errors as soon as you get it. Errors may make it hard to file a claim.
  • You may need to show this page to your lender as proof of coverage.

Article Sources

  1. Texas Office of Public Insurance Counsel. "What Is a Dec Page?" Accessed Nov. 29, 2021.

  2. IRMI. "Binder." Accessed Nov. 29, 2021.