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Reviewed by Nov 11, 2021| Updated on
The injury-in-fact trigger is a theory for the trigger of insurance coverage that states that coverage of an insurance policy is to be activated when an injury or damage actually occurs to the policyholder. When courts find it difficult to identify the exact time an injury or damage occurs, the injury-in-fact trigger is generally activated.
Injury-in-fact triggers are often known as actual injury triggers. Policyholders who wish to reclaim damages will be required to file a claim and then prove the occurrence of the damage or injury. While this can be pretty straightforward with a single, visible incident proving the loss, there are some situations where it could be difficult to determine if the injury or damage actually occurred or if the damage occurred over a period of time. In such cases, the court activates the injury triggers.
In the case of an injury-in-fact cause, it is often said that an incident has occurred if the complainant was actually injured and not through an unlawful act. For instance, let us assume that a company released biochemical waste into a nearby river due to which people became ill after consuming the water over a period of time.
In such cases, the court would activate the injury-in-fact trigger not when the company had spilt the chemical but actually when the person fell ill. Injury-in-fact causes are said to be activated when the damage or injury has actually occurred.
Injury-in-fact triggers are similar to continuous trigger theory with the only difference being that the claimant’s coverage is activated when he/she is exposed or actually injured due to any form of harm.