If you were injured in an auto collision in the San Diego area caused by another driver, you expect his insurance provider to treat you fairly when you file a claim for injury compensation. Unfortunately, the insurance adjuster could engage in bad faith insurance tactics to trick you into an unfair settlement—or simply try to deny your claim.
Five Bad Faith Insurance Tactics You Should Know
Now, I'm not saying that all insurance companies treat car accident victims unfairly. However, to protect yourself, you need to understand the tactics some providers try and how to avoid them.
Denying Your Claim for No Reason
The insurance company has to provide a legitimate reason for claim denial. This might involve policy exclusions, disputed liability, failure to notify, lapsed policy or other issues—none of which you want to hear, of course, but potentially valid. Without proper rationale, the provider might be trying to shirk responsibility for paying your justifiable settlement.
Failing to Investigate Your Claim
When you file your claim, the carrier is supposed to conduct an investigation into the cause of the crash and your injuries to determine their liability to compensate you. If it fails to do so, states it didn't have enough time, or the investigation is inadequate, this may be a bad faith tactic to deny your case.
Offering Significantly Less Than You Deserve
One common bad faith tactic an insurer might employ is to offer you a quick settlement for far less than you're owed by California law. You should never accept a settlement offer without first securing experienced legal counsel to ensure your rights are protected and all financial considerations for your recovery are included in the negotiations.
Misstating California Law or the Insurance Policy
An insurance company has a duty to be honest and truthful about its policy terms and the law that applies to car accident cases. Unfortunately, an unscrupulous adjuster could misstate the insurance company’s obligation to pay you according to coverage guidelines or California law. You can protect yourself from this bad faith tactic by hiring a skilled lawyer soon after your accident and letting him handle all communications with the provider.
Making Threatening Statements
Insurance adjusters shouldn't make threatening statements, such as filing criminal charges or other legal action against you. If they do, this is a red flag that you need a lawyer immediately.
Do you want to protect yourself from these and other bad faith insurance tactics in your car accident case? Start a live chat or fill out the online form on this page to schedule a free consultation to learn how I can help you build a winning case and secure a proper injury settlement.