When accidents happen, many victims look to their insurance companies for the compensation they deserve. Unfortunately, many times those same insurance companies employ strategies to deny paying individuals the compensation rightfully due. In fact, insurers are paying out lower claims, charging higher premiums and reaping greater profits than at almost any time in history.
In some instances, insurance company strategies rise to the level of bad faith, where the company fails to honor a legitimate claim for unfair reasons. Too often bad faith occurs after you’ve already suffered a serious accident or injury and the insurance company’s failure to pay only serves to make your bad situation, worse, in an attempt to earn a profit. Those insurers who commit bad faith often assume that their customers lack the resources or desire to fight back.
Bad faith affects all types of insurance policies, including disability, life, homeowner, automobile and accidental death.
Different strategies and insurance companies employ to minimize payouts or avoid payment altogether include:
• Denying benefits that should be paid
• Misleading an insured into entering into an agreement without the intention of honoring claims
• Failing to promptly and thoroughly investigate a claim
• Refusing to pay full benefits
• Unreasonable delays in payment
• Interpreting the language of the insurance policy in an unreasonable and unfavorable way
• Failing to defend a suit against the insured