ERIC Number: ED261341
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1985-May
Reference Count: N/A
Readers' Perception of Contractual Rights in a Medical Insurance Summary. CDC Technical Report No. 15.
Stratman, James F.
Two experiments were conducted to determine what readers are likely to understand about the information contained in a medical insurance brochure intended for employees. Twenty-seven subjects were recruited through newspaper advertisements for a "reading experiment." The studies addressed questions concerning (1) how likely readers are to notice the fine-print "contract disclaimer" contained near the end of the brochure's summary; (2) how failure to notice this disclaimer would affect the readers' understanding of contractual rights under the insurance plan; (3) the problems readers are likely to have in understanding the meaning or implications of the disclaimer, assuming they do notice it; and (4) what inferences readers are likely to draw about the nature of their coverage under the summary plan, given the information presented in the summary. Results of the subjects' readings and interviews suggest that readers are very unlikely to read the disclaimer in its present position and with its smaller typeface. In addition, given the language presently used in the brochure, few readers are likely to believe that the company is not obligated to cover its retirees following a shut-down. (HOD)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Carnegie-Mellon Univ., Pittsburgh, PA. Communications Design Center.