What is insurance bad faith?
The relationship between you and your insurance company is a contract. You agree to pay premiums when they are due and the insurance company agrees to act in good faith when dealing with your claims. If an insurance company unreasonably withholds benefits of the policy from its insured, it may be considered to be acting in “bad faith.” This may include denying a reasonable claim and/or requiring unreasonable actions or documentation by an insured person to prove a claim. If you believe that your insurer has acted in bad faith, in addition to the value of the claim itself, you may be entitled to damages related to emotional distress and punitive damages if the conduct is considered outrageous.
Dale E. Anstine, personal injury attorneys in York, PA, can help
The personal injury law firm of Dale E. Anstine has been working with insurance bad faith personal injury cases in York County and Adams County for more than 40 years. If you have been denied a legitimate insurance claim, or you feel the insurance settlement amount doesn’t meet the needs of your claim, you need an experienced Pennsylvania insurance bad faith attorney. At Dale E. Anstine, our attorneys are ready to take on big insurance companies and have successfully represented clients in a variety of bad faith cases of all sizes. Dale E. Anstine offers free consultations anytime so if you have questions, you can talk to an attorney today.
Examples of insurance bad faith tactics
There are many kinds of insurance bad faith tactics including delay in handling claims, inadequate investigation, threats against an insured, and refusing to make a reasonable settlement offer, just to name a few. These tactics are meant to exhaust the insured, but when you have an insurance bad faith personal injury attorney from Dale E. Anstine on your side, we will fight for your rights. Here are some of the more common tactics we see in cases of insurance bad faith:
- Denying a claim without giving a reason
After you file a claim with your insurance company, they are required to give you a reason if the claim was denied. Refusing to offer a reason is in bad faith. If you think your claim is valid, and that your insurance company should approve your claim, its best to get an experienced attorney on your side.
- Refusing to pay a claim
When you make a valid claim after an accident, your insurance company is required to settle or pay that claim within a reasonable amount of time. While the definition of “reasonable” is somewhat subjective, you have the right to the compensation you deserve. If your insurance company is refusing to pay a valid claim, they may be acting in bad faith, and they may be liable to you for additional compensation.
- Ignoring requests for documentation
If you have asked your insurance company for documentation related to its decision related to your claim and they refused to provide that to you, this could be in bad faith. You may have a claim against the insurance company. Be sure to reach out to our office if you feel that your insurer isn’t acting in your best interests.
- Delayed investigations
When you are in good standing with your insurance company, they have a right and a duty to you as the insured to conduct a thorough and prompt investigation when you file a claim. If your insurance company delays your investigation, or isn’t thorough in its work, you may have a bad faith claim against the company.
- Low-balling a settlement amount
Low-ball settlement offers, or settlement offers that are considerably less than expected, are not uncommon within the insurance industry. If, however, the insurance company refuses to negotiate or will not budge with the settlement amount, you may have a right to a bad faith claim.
Contact Us Today
If you feel like your insurance company may have acted in bad faith, it’s important to contact an attorney immediately. Contact us to speak with an experienced insurance bad faith lawyer. Consultations are always free.