Insurance allows us to have things, keep them, and replace them if necessary—without being forced into financial ruin. And although the policies themselves sometimes tend to be complicated, the basic premise is simple: you find an insurer and then pay them premiums to protect against loss. This may be for any type of insurance, including auto insurance, health and life, homeowner’s, general liability, professional liability (errors and omissions), and more.
The process usually starts out easily enough. Depending on what lines of insurance you seek, an agent or company most be sought out to help you with your purchase. Once you receive your policy, you have the peace of mind in knowing that your home or business is covered, and if something catastrophic were to happen, you would be okay. In the event of a claim, it may be that you were in an automobile accident due to the negligence of others, or you may have had a homeowner’s claim after a fire, weather event, or even a slip-and-fall accident by a guest at your home.
Once the claim has been filed, an adjuster is assigned to the case and begins an initial investigation, usually hoping to interview you and anyone else involved. If they are working for the other side (for instance if you were in a car accident, and due to negligence the other party’s insurer will be paying out) and it appears a settlement may be in order, it is critical not only to have an injury attorney on your side, but also to refer all calls and questions to their office.
In handling the insurance company on your own, you may not only find that they don’t take you as seriously as if you were working with an attorney, but the process may be slow and frustrating. This can be exponentially worse if they are guilty of practicing bad faith. You may find yourself facing incredibly long delays but getting little explanation—and/or it may seem that no one has even begun investigating your claim. Any settlement offers may be extremely low and unreasonable, or the insurer may begin trying to inconvenience you or intimidate you to the point where you drop the case altogether. Less aggressive tactics include pushing you to collect and submit volumes of documentation for your own case. If you think that is what’s happening, it is possible to push back by asking them to clearly explain why such excessive documentation is necessary.
In other cases, you may be subjected to verbal abuse intended to make you back down. This could begin during the interview process and continue from there, to include making accusations which have no basis, threats insinuating there won’t be a settlement, and harassment of witnesses. It is in your best interest to have expert legal help from an experienced office like the Bolender Law Firm.
If a dispute over a claim cannot be easily resolved through a call or written communication, our attorneys will advocate on behalf of policyholders through litigation, arbitration, or non-binding mediation. Our attorneys are experienced in representing clients in state and federal courts, at both the trial and appellate level. Call us at 310-320-0725 now or submit an easy consultation request online. We are here to help!