About Insurance Law
Most Americans have come to rely on insurance coverage in case of a catastrophic event. While insurance coverage is typically a wise purchase, you may encounter difficulty obtaining your benefits or compensation when you need it most. Insurance policies are one of the most complicated contracts that individuals and businesses will ever sign, and insurance companies are in the business of paying out as little as possible. If the insurance company denies your claim, it’s not only downright frustrating, but it can also be financially devastating.
Fortunately for policyholders, insurance companies don’t have legal standing to run amuck and conduct themselves in any manner they please, withholding money unfairly from their claimants like you. However, the caveat is that you must be informed and prepared to call the insurance company into question. This can be a scary and overwhelming task, often best left up to an experienced insurance lawyer. An attorney familiar with working with insurance companies will have the knowledge and experience necessary to take insurance carriers to task for their bad faith dealings.
What is Insurance Law?
Federal and state statutes govern how insurance companies must conduct themselves. They aren’t above the law and are expected to treat consumers and claimants with good faith and fair dealing. There are many different insurance laws that regulate issues like:
- How long insurers have to respond to a claim
- Reasons insurers can deny a claim
- What types of information insurers can seek from a claimant
- How disputes should be handled
In general, insurance laws help to protect consumers against insurance companies seeking to minimize settlements or deny claims whenever possible. Examples of federal insurance laws include the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and the Dodd-Frank Act, just to name a few. States also have their own insurance codes to protect consumers.
Types of Bad Faith Insurance Cases
Under the law, all insurance companies have an "implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing." When insurance companies pit themselves against consumers or claimants, an unfair fight will likely result.
Suppose they don’t handle your claim fairly or act in a trustworthy manner. In that case, you have reasons to hire an insurance attorney and file a bad faith insurance lawsuit. Bad faith insurance cases happen far too often and in any of the following areas of insurance:
- Health Insurance: Perhaps your health insurance denied your claim because it labeled your procedure as cosmetic. Your attorney can work with your health provider to ensure the correct documentation is provided to the insurer to cover your claim.
- Auto Insurance: Auto insurance companies are notorious for acting in bad faith. They might wait months to give you an answer about if your claim is covered and how much it is worth, hoping that you give up and go away. However, this is acting in bad faith, and an insurance claims attorney can advocate for you.
- Home Insurance: A home is an investment. If something devastating happens to it, it could leave you in dire financial straits. Homeowners insurance companies often try to unfairly deny claims on the false basis that a covered incident didn’t cause the damage.
- Long-Term Care Insurance: Insurers for long-term care benefits have many bad faith tricks up their sleeves to deny a claim for an elderly or disabled person. For instance, they might say that the claimant can perform some tasks of daily living. In reality, they might be able to put on their shirt or comb their hair, but that doesn’t mean they can live safely at home alone and care for all of their needs.
- Disability Insurance: Like workers’ compensation, disability insurance pays your wages if you cannot return to your same or similar job after an injury. Disability insurance companies nearly always request an independent medical examination (IME) that can help them deny your claim. They may say that you can perform work or more challenging work than you or your own doctor allege.
Why Do I Need an Insurance Law Attorney?
Insurance companies and claimants have opposing interests; insurance companies want to save money, and claimants are typically seeking the most benefits or highest compensation available. No matter what type of insurance claim you file, you can bet that the insurance company wants to protect its assets more than it wants to pay your claim and act with integrity. They have experienced attorneys waiting in the wings to help them deny your claims and commit bad faith acts.
Without a fierce and experienced insurance law attorney on your side, you won’t stand a chance in countering their illegal and unfair practices. They know that most claimants are at a vulnerable stage in life, they need money, and they likely lack insurance knowledge. If you don’t have legal representation, they will take full advantage of this situation. Call an attorney today to protect your legal rights.