Wrongful Denial of Insurance Claims
Americans pay millions of dollars in insurance premiums every year, sometimes because insurance is required by law or by a lender, but also because being insured can provide the peace of mind that come with knowing you’ve provided for yourself and your family in the face of an unexpected calamity.
But that peace of mind may fall by the wayside once the worst happens and it becomes necessary to file a claim. Insurance companies are notorious for denying claims on any possible pretext.
If you have paid insurance premiums religiously for years and have filed a claim, and your insurance company has denied payment, don’t be tempted to give up and walk away without a fight. That’s what your insurance company hopes you’ll do. If you have a legitimate claim under a valid policy, there is help available. An experienced insurance bad faith attorney can help you contest the denial. Insurance companies have a legal obligation to promptly investigate and pay valid claims, but often deny them simply as a matter of routine. But when they do this without a valid reason, they can be held accountable for your damages and may have to pay out more than the coverage under your policy.
Ostensible Reasons for Denying a Claim
These are some reasons the insurance company may cite for denying your claim:
- The injury you’ve suffered is listed is excluded from the policy (usually in small print so you won’t notice). But sometimes, these exclusions are not legal. Your attorney can advise you. These exclusions are often buried in the fine print. Sometimes the exclusion may be illegal.
- The insurance company is applying its own skewed interpretation of a vague technicality.
- Coverage has lapsed. (You may be out of luck if this is truly the case.)
- Your claim form is incomplete or contains incorrect information. (This may be because of a simple oversight that is easily corrected.)
- You failed to seek medical treatment or file a claim immediately after the accident. (Sometimes it is not immediately apparent that you’ve suffered a serious injury. Symptoms of certain types of injuries typically develop in the weeks and months following the accident.)
- You haven’t provided medical records, or your records are incomplete. (If you’re having trouble obtaining your records, your attorney can help.)
- Your injury was preexisting and was not caused by the accident. (Even if you suffered a preexisting condition, you may be able to prove the accident exacerbated it.)
- You did not take reasonable precautions to avoid the injury or to avoid making it worse (for example if you failed to take the medication or refused a procedure that your doctor advised).
When Coverage is Denied
Your insurance company owes you the duty to act in good faith. If the company breaches this duty and fails to investigate your claim or to negotiate a settlement, and denies your claim without good reason, you may have a cause of action against the company for acting in bad faith. You should contact an attorney whose main focus is pursuing insurance company bad faith claims.
The Surrano Law Firm in Phoenix, Arizona, regularly handles insurance bad faith claims nationwide. With a long history of successfully resolving bad faith disputes with recalcitrant insurance companies, Surrano Law is a top choice when your attempts to get your claim paid have hit a brick wall. Principal attorney Charles Surrano understands insurer bad faith from both sides of the fence. He has worked as an insurance company defense lawyer, and now puts the knowledge of the industry he obtained to work you people like you who are being treated unfairly after years of faithfully paying for coverage, only to be denied when you need it.
Good Legal Representation Levels the Playing Field
Insurers are usually very large corporations with extensive resources, which they use freely to deny claims and minimize the amount that they pay out, all in the name of increasing company profits. With the help of Surrano law, you can fight back and win the payment that you deserve. In many cases, the insurer will have to pay your legal fees, and you may even receive an additional award of punitive damages, designed to discourage bad faith handling of future claims.
If your insurance company has denied, ignored, or delayed payment of your claim on a current policy without reasonable cause, call the Surrano Law Offices today to schedule a free consultation.