Insurance Bad Faith FAQ
Questions about California bad faith insurance claims
DL Law Group is a highly respected California law firm representing clients in the San Francisco bay area who have fallen victim to bad faith insurance by their insurance company.
Monthly insurance premiums are paid with a basic understanding that if an accident happens, the resulting damages will be covered. When insurance companies fail to properly or completely cover your expenses, an insurance bad faith claim can be filed by a qualified California insurance bad faith lawyer.
The process of filing insurance claims is complicated and confusing. Insurance companies are profit-making businesses that will often focus more on their bottom line than serving their policy-holder’s needs. If you feel you are being treated unfairly by your insurance company, insurance bad faith attorneys in the San Francisco bay area can help navigate the filing process of an insurance bad faith claim.
- What is insurance bad faith?
- What are some examples of insurance bad faith?
- How can my insurance claim be denied?
- When is the insurance company within their rights to deny my claim?
- What to do if your insurance company has acted in bad faith?
- What damages can an insurance bad faith claim recover?
- What is an insurer’s Duty to Defend?
- What is reverse bad faith?
- How is an insurance bad faith lawsuit filed?
What is insurance bad faith?
A universal definition for bad faith does not really exist, but insurance bad faith law involves cases of unfair or unreasonable practices and actions by insurance companies. When the duty of good faith is breeched during any step of the insurance claims process, a claim of insurance bad faith can be filed.
What are some examples of insurance bad faith?
Common situations that may indicate an insurance company has acted in bad faith include:
- Coverage is denied without viable reasons
- Coverage is misrepresented to avoid claim payments
- Deceptive business practices
- Payment delays
- Lower payment amount than that what is reasonably due
- Documentation requests that unfairly delays the claims process
- Policy is canceled or not renewed without reasonable cause
- Charging higher premiums after a claim is filed
How can my insurance claim be denied?
Insurance companies are allowed to deny claims for legitimate reasons. People being insured are just as responsible to follow the contract details as the insurance companies. Intentional or unintentional violations of your insurance policy can lead to a claim being denied. Either way, if your claim was denied, consult with an insurance bad faith lawyer with experience in dealing with insurance company claims denials.
When is the insurance company within their rights to deny my claim?
There are situations when claim denials are not acts of bad faith by your insurance company. Your insurance company can deny a claim under the following circumstances:
- Insurance contract is violate by the policyholder
- Claim is not covered in the policy
- Fraudulent claim is filed
What to do if your insurance company has acted in bad faith?
The most important thing you can do if you feel as though your insurance company is acting in bad faith is to fully document all communications with them. Keeping a detailed record of all correspondences will enable you to provide proof of your good faith efforts to resolve any issues.Before a claim is made, experienced insurance bad faith attorneys can guide you through some important steps to bolster your case.
- Know Your Policy: Carefully read over your insurance policy to make sure that what you are requesting a claim for is actually covered. Exemptions and exceptions are included in the fine print of these long and confusing documents. An insurance bad faith lawyer can review your contract to discover whether you are making a legitimate claim.
- Keep a Paper Trail: Keep detailed records of who you talked to, when you talked to them, and what was said. Any documents regarding the policy or potential claim should also be organized and retained, such as accident pictures, repair estimates, purchase receipts, or any other related documentation.
- Appeal the Claim Denial: Insurance adjusters must follow strict procedural rules. Claim denials can be reviewed by supervisors, though it often takes effort to go up the managerial line of command before getting a fair review of your claim.
- Demand Letter: Let your insurance company know that you are not accepting of their denial decision. Inform them that you will file an insurance bad faith claim if the situation is not resolved.
- File the complaint: Even if you are confident that your case is solid, an insurance bad faith lawyer in the San Francisco area can make sure the claim is properly filed with the best chance of a decision in your favor.
What damages can an insurance bad faith claim recover?
The rules governing of insurance bad faith law allow for a wide range of damages that can be recovered from an insurance company if the insurer breached its duty, including:
- Damages incurred beyond the limits of your policy
- Judgements that are larger than the limits of the policy
- Statutory penalties or fines
- Emotional distress
- Economic losses and insurance bad faith attorney fees
- Punitive damages
What is an insurer’s Duty to Defend?
Your insurance company had a duty to defend you against specific types of lawsuits. Insurance companies are obligated to represent you in lawsuits against you that are related to your coverage details. You are paying for this service in your policy.If your insurance company refuses or neglects to defend you in lawsuits within the scope of your policy, it can be a case of Insurance bad faith.
What is reverse bad faith?
Insurance companies will often file a claim or reverse bad faith in response to a legal claim against them. Even in cases of insurance bad faith on the part of the insurance company, if a policyholder acts in bad faith, the insurance company may file a claim of reverse bad faith.A reverse bad faith claim can affect the original insurance bad faith claim, but the company would need to prove that your actions interfered with the processing of the claim to harm the insurance company. There are some jurisdictions that do not even recognize reverse bad faith claims.
How is an insurance bad faith lawsuit filed?
California laws related to cases of insurance bad faith can be complicated and confusing to anyone but experienced insurance bad faith attorneys in represent insurance claim victims in the San Francisco and San Jose areas. Consulting your lawyer will help make you make the right decisions throughout the process.
One of the benefits of hiring an insurance bad faith lawyer is that they are left to communicate with the insurance company and you should never have to deal with them again.
If you or a loved one feels you have been a victim of insurance bad faith by your insurer, seek qualified representation from an experienced insurance bad faith lawyers at DL Law Group who can guide you through the complicated process of filing an insurance bad faith claim. For complete information and free consultation regarding your claim, call toll free (415) 678-5050 today.