Insurance adjusters are supposed to operate in good faith, meaning they do what they can to be fair to those affected by the incident. Unfortunately, some adjusters have a tendency to be more loyal to their employers than their customers. A bad-faith insurance attorney in Las Vegas can tell you that the practices of a dishonest adjuster can be egregious. We’ll look at what it takes to spot these practices and how to proceed from there.
Know the Adjuster’s Obligations
The adjuster doesn’t have to endlessly fight for the rights of the customer, but they are expected to complete the following:
- Pay reasonable claims quickly: The adjuster is expected to provide enough payment to cover the damages, and they’re expected to do so in a timely manner.
- Investigate thoroughly: The adjuster needs to look at all the facts before they make major decisions about how much to provide the claimant. They may need to research the laws or do a cross-analysis of the damage to ensure they have a solid idea of when, how, and why it occurred.
- Reasonable communication: The insurance adjuster is expected to communicate with the claimant as they go about their investigation. If there is a delay, they need to let the customer know what’s happening on their end. If the claimant has questions, they need to answer as thoroughly as possible and as quickly as possible.
- Explanations: If a claim is denied, the insurance adjuster needs to explain why it has been denied. They need to include valid reasons that speak directly to the decision, as opposed to inundating the claimant with unnecessary information.
- Continued relationships: Filing a claim is not a cause for termination with the company. It is not acceptable for an insurance company to cancel a policy after a claim has been filed.
How Bad Faith Practices Work
Bad faith insurance attorneys in Las Vegas know that there can be plenty of nuances found within the laws above. For instance, what if you’re working with a small insurance firm and the adjuster is called away on an emergency? In this case, they may not be able to ask another adjuster to fill in for them due to the limited resources of the company.
The Line between an Honest Mistake
This is not an example of bad faith practices because the adjuster didn’t intentionally delay communication or payment because they were attempting to cheat the customer. From there, though, the questions can become murkier. How long can the adjuster take before they need to make other arrangements on the customer’s behalf? How severe does the emergency need to be to justify the time off? Every case has its own nuances behind it, and a bad-faith insurance attorney will be able to tell you more about how these actions are viewed in the eyes of the law.
This can be a frustrating thing to hear if you feel that the insurance company is intentionally trying to cheat you. However, it’s ultimately a good thing to know before you take any other action. When it comes to navigating the process, it’s all about staying realistic. What is the line between an honest mistake and a bad faith practice? It sometimes comes down to the eye of the beholder.
An insurance adjuster may be motivated by any number of factors when it comes to how they operate on a daily basis. In most cases, the insurance adjuster is just trying to keep their jobs and stay in line for future promotions. However, in some cases, the insurance adjuster may actually be paid more if they can save the company on certain claims.
At any given point and time, the insurance adjuster is likely looking for ways to use certain information against you. They may act empathetic, but what they’re really trying to get you to do is admit fault for the accident.
Legal Representation in Las Vegas
If you suspect that the insurance adjuster is intentionally attempting to withhold compensation or answers, a bad faith insurance attorney in Las Vegas can step in right when you need them to. If you’ve already started the claim process, this is the perfect time to get support before the case has a chance to really spin out of control. The right attorney will look at the facts of the matter. They’ll see how the adjuster responds to different questions, what kind of information they give, and whether the adjuster is really paying attention to certain details. What’s more, the right lawyer can stop you from saying something that you’ll later regret.
Conquering the Goliaths
Even a medium-sized insurance company typically has plenty of resources on its side, when they know that most of the clients don’t. To really prove that they acted in bad faith, a lawyer will be the one to show that the insurance adjuster had no good reason to refuse to pay for compensation or delay communication in the case of the claim.
Taking the Case to the Next Level
To take the case up a notch means really getting into the weeds of the insurance’s exact obligations to you as a customer. This comes down to understanding the terms of the insurance policy, which is often deliberately designed to be vague. This way, when the insurance lawyer reads a clause in one sense, the insurance company can argue that this wasn’t the intent of their wording. To be fair to all insurance companies, there is no way to draft a policy that will cover all circumstances. The best that anyone can do is look at the situation and then try to apply the terms the best they can. That being said, insurance companies are looking for ways to avoid payment, which can end up manifesting in any number of ways. From confusing language to outright avoidance, employees can take any number of routes to shirk their responsibility.
Find a Bad Faith Insurance Attorney in Las Vegas
The good news is that a bad-faith insurance lawyer can help you recoup all of your losses and then some. If you can successfully show that the adjuster acted in bad faith, you can request emotional damages and fees for exceeding deadlines. At Leverty & Associates, you’ll work with lawyers who know the common signs of bad faith practices. Once they’ve spotted those, they can start drilling into how exactly this has affected you, so they can start structuring the best compensation package for you.