How to Go About a Bad Faith Insurance Claim
The purpose of insurance is to protect policyholders when they get involved in comparably expensive accidents. These expenses may include auto damages or injuries to one or all parties. For instance, if you are rear-ended, this can damage your car and cause injuries to you. The insurance provider of the at-fault party has to provide financial compensation to repair your vehicle as well as treat your injuries.
However, deciding which expenses are covered or not usually depends on your specific policy and the circumstances that surround the mishap. If you are found partly at fault or responsible, the other party’s insurance provider may deny payment for your damages and/or injuries.
While a contract requires that insurance companies compensate insurance holders for accident damages that satisfy conditions in the contract, there are insurers that do not honor their own requirements by denying some or all the payments. In a scenario like this, a policyholder will often be unsure about the steps to be taken next, considering that insurers typically have a strong bargaining position because of their size and the intricacies of their rules.
You have a bad faith insurance claim when the insurer:
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> becomes unreasonable in interpreting the terms in the contract;
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> withholds payments on purpose;
> doesn’t want to settle a case;
> refuses to reimburse the entire amount of expenses of the insurance holder; and
> leaves the claim unprocessed.
If you have been denied by your insurer reimbursement for damages, there are a lot of options you can take. First of all, appeal the decision. In most cases, companies will only let you do this within a limited time, so make sure you know any important deadlines. Second, you have to prove that the company brushed your rights aside by denying your claim for reasons that are unjustifiable by your policy.
Going through a bad faith insurance claim, whether auto accident-related or otherwise, can be a daunting as well as confusing process. When you deal with a personal injury, you could end up being debilitated for life or being unable to take up a job. Therefore, you must consider talking to a personal injury lawyer so you can ge all the help you need for the financial compensation you deserve.
In the U.S., it is the general rule of law that every party pays its own lawyers’ fees, known as “The American Rule,” which is different from the English Law, where only the responsible party will pay the fees for both sides.
However, in specific states, they have created exceptions to the American Rule, one of which says that the wronged party’s award will include the attorneys’ fees. These exceptions exist in at least three states – New York, Utah and Pennsylvania. Again, talking to a veteran attorney will enlighten you as to whether lawyers’ fees will be part of the award or not, depending on your state.