You pay your insurance premiums every month. When it comes time for you to need that money, you expect your insurance company will stand beside you. Unfortunately, that’s not always the case.
What are my legal options if an insurance carrier refuses to honor my claim?
A law firm can help if you have encountered difficulties with an insurance claim. Insurance companies have long been known to be slow to pay out claims or deny valid claims altogether. For these and other reasons, a legal team can be beneficial for assisting people in recovering their damages by forcing carriers to honor their obligations.
This is called bad faith litigation and without a seasoned insurance lawyer by your side, you may find it nearly impossible to obtain a fair settlement in a timely manner.
What are common examples of bad faith litigation?
What many insurance carriers share in common is their focus on maximizing profits over taking care of their customers and other claimants. They are familiar with all manner of unethical and illegal behavior by carriers who are required by law to honor valid claims by paying fair compensation.
Here is an incomplete list of some of the most common examples of bad faith litigation:
- Denying an insurance claim for a reason that is invalid
- Denying benefits to the claimant despite the fact that they are eligible to receive those benefits
- Delaying the acceptance or denial of a submitted claim beyond a reasonable period of time
- Offering a settlement amount that is far less than the actual amount of damages sustained by the claimant
- Relying on the biased testimony of medical personnel or accident investors (who are paid by the insurance company) to deny a valid claim
What is involved with bad faith litigation?
When we represent a client, it is sometimes in the client’s best interest to file a lawsuit against the insurance company. This may be necessary in order to compel the company to fulfill their legal obligation to negotiate a settlement in good faith and honor a valid claim.
Bad faith litigation may involve any of the following scenarios:
- An insurance policy customer alleges that the insurance company is not honoring their agreement to compensate the claimant for a valid claim
- A U.S. government agency initiates litigation against an insurance company based on their evidence that the company has continuously acted in bad faith. The agency might be a state agency tasked to litigate companies in these matters, or it may be the Attorney General
Will I have to go to court?
After a review of your circumstances, we may have a sense of how likely it is that you’ll have to go to court against the insurance company. You may be surprised to learn that much of the time a case is settled before it even enters the courtroom.
If you feel you have been mistreated by an insurance company, call an insurance claim lawyer in Chicago, IL today to schedule a complimentary consultation. They can help you reclaim what is rightfully yours.
Thanks to Childress, Loucks & Plunkett for their insight into insurance claims and what to do it when it isn’t honored.