Car insurance claims get rejected for many reasons including incorrect information, paperwork errors, lack of due care, or failure to answer the insurance company’s questions accurately. Insurance companies try to pay out as little as possible since they are a business and need to make a profit and it’s in their best interest to pay out - at the most - no more than you (or the other person) has paid into the policy. When making a claim, you have to follow their exact procedure and protocol in order for your claim to be successful. Were you involved in an accident and went through the claims process only to have your insurance claim rejected? Here’s what you should do next.
What Insurance Companies Figured Out...
Many insurance companies own millions to billions in assets and have figured out that they increase their bottom line by paying out less in claims. The American Association for Justice (of which Merrida Coxwell is a member) outlines in their whitepaper The Ten Worst Insurance Companies in America, citing examples of insurance companies outright denying or settling claims at appalling figures, much less than the individual deserved. While their CEOs make millions, their policies are often ‘deny, delay, defend,’ which - for a consumer - is not good news. Don’t be a victim of shady insurance company tactics.
So That’s What I’m Up Against! What Should I Do Next?
1. Look at your policy
If your claim has been denied, then you need to look over the reasons your claim has been denied. Check your policy documents and ensure you gave the correct details at the start. Highlight any wording in your policy that can show that you are covered - you may need it later. Any wording that is ambiguous, poorly explained, or confusing should be noted. Your insurance company should provide clear information; a case can rest on your not understanding what is and isn’t covered. If you took reasonable care to answer all of the insurance company’s questions, new rules dictate that your claim cannot be rejected when you answer questions honestly to the best of your knowledge. If the insurer did not ask for information - and they say you should have disclosed said information - you will need to take notes.
2. Contact the insurance company
After looking at your policy, contact your insurance company or write a formal letter of complaint.
3. Get an assessment from an expert
If your insurer says that the damage was due to wear and tear and you think it’s accidental damage, then get a professional opinion. You will be charged for an expert opinion; however, it may help your case.
If all of these steps seem complicated…
If these steps are too complicated - or you’re at your wit’s end dealing with insurance claims adjusters - be sure to contact a trusted attorney. A legal team with experience of personal injury cases knows how to speak to insurance companies and present the correct information when needed. If your claim has been denied for reasons you feel are unfair, an attorney can get to the bottom of the case and help you reach a fair settlement. A car accident is stressful enough without going it alone against insurance company legal teams. Insurance companies deal with these claims everyday, you do not so it’s understandable that it isn’t an easy or stress-free process. Alleviate stress by hiring an attorney to help you appeal your denied claim.
Read here to find out how to file an auto insurance claim the right way the first time.
When your claim has been rejected, it doesn’t mean the decision is fair nor does it mean the end of your case. Make sure you protect yourself and understand your rights.
Make sure your claim is accepted the first time.
If you’ve been in a car accident, make sure your claim is accepted the first time by contacting a trusted attorney from the get go. Even if your claim has been rejected, we still may be able to help. Call Coxwell & Associates, PLLC today to get your FREE case consultation.
Disclaimer: This blog is intended as general information purposes only, and is not a substitute for legal advice. Anyone with a legal problem should consult a lawyer immediately.