Insurance is meant to protect your home, vehicle, and business. It also provides financial coverage for medical and health expenses.
When you file a claim, you expect your insurance company to treat you fairly. An insurer that fulfills its promises is acting in good faith. However, an insurance company acts in bad faith when it fails to meet its end of the bargain.
Insurance companies are businesses because their goal is profitability. However, if an insurer puts profits ahead of your interests, you may have cause to file a lawsuit to recover what you are rightfully owed.
If you encountered bad faith in the insurance industry through a wrongful denial of your claim or a lowball settlement offer after a car accident or other injury, the experienced attorneys at The Krist Law Firm, P.C. can help. We can fight so you recover the compensation you may are entitled to.
Call us today at (281) 283-8500, or send us a message online to request a free consultation.
Bad Faith Insurance Tactics
Most individuals are not insurance experts. For the average person, it can be quite difficult to understand whether or not they were treated fairly by their insurance company.
If your claim was denied, you may not know how they justified its decision.
In such cases, it’s important to consult an experienced lawyer who understands insurance law and breaches of contract. If an insurance company wrongfully denies your claim, it has breached its contractual obligation to you.
The situation is even worse when insurance companies use bad faith tactics to avoid paying what’s fair.
Examples of Insurance Bad Faith
If your insurance company is intentionally acting in bad faith by failing to pay a legitimate claim, the company is subjecting itself to possible punitive damages. These damages serve to both compensate you, as well as punish the insurance company for its unfair business practices.
Some bad faith insurance practices include:
Lack of Communication
Insurance companies that avoid communicating with their customers after they file claims may be trying to avoid their responsibility. If the company fails to acknowledge it has received your documentation, or fail to move forward with the investigation, you may be dealing with a bad faith insurer.
Communication with your insurance company should be frequent, free-flowing, and relatively easy in terms of asking questions, getting answers, and exchanging information that leads to a timely decision about your claim.
Delaying Payment on a Valid Claim
Another indication that your insurance company is acting in bad faith is using delay tactics to slow down the process that would lead to a fair settlement. One of the tactics used by an insurance provider is to make unreasonable demands for documentation and evidence.
By delaying for as long as possible, an insurance provider may attempt to persuade you to either accept a lowball offer or give up altogether. Individuals in desperate need of a payout are more likely to fall victim to insurance company delay tactics that involve a low settlement offer.
Denying a Claim Without Cause
Some insurers acting in bad faith may deny coverage hoping that you will concede to the denial and give up. However, if you have been wrongly denied coverage, you have the right to challenge the decision. Insurance companies have a right to deny a claim, but they must provide you with reasons as to why and how they reached their decision.
Pressure to Accept an Unfair Offer
Another tactic seen when an insurance company is acting in bad faith is pressuring you to agree to an unfair settlement. The company may try to persuade you that no other offer is available or that your policy fails to cover the expenses you expected.
An experienced attorney who is knowledgeable about insurance law can help you uncover the actual amount you are owed and pursue that amount.
Changing or Cancelling Your Policy
Another bad faith tactic involves your insurance company canceling or making changes to your policy without prior notification. This is in an effort to minimize the compensation you receive or deny coverage completely. The idea is that the eligibility of the claim is based on the newly revised policy instead of the original policy terms.
Always keep a copy of your original insurance policy to help ensure this does not happen to you.
Call a Bad Faith Insurance Attorney Today
Having difficulty with an insurance claim or settlement is frustrating. If you find yourself fighting with an insurer acting in bad faith, contact The Krist Law Firm, P.C.. You deserve a strong advocate and have the right to full and fair compensation.
For a free case evaluation, call us today at (281) 283-8500, or contact us online for a free and confidential case consultation.