To Fight for Your Right: 6 Key Things to Do if a Car Insurance Company Refuses to Pay
It sounds like a nightmare scenario. You have a comprehensive insurance policy. You have never missed a payment. Yet, when you finally need to make a claim, the insurer is reluctant to pay out.
26% of all claims handled by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) involve how insurers handle claims and the lengthy delays that often occur. What happens if the insurance company refuses to pay out? What options do you have available as a policyholder? These are questions that legal professionals receive on a daily basis. This is what you should do if your insurance company refuses to pay.
Communicate with the Insurance Company
The first step is to follow up with the insurance company about why they are denying your claim. Request that the company provide you with their reasons in writing. Be sure to follow up in writing as well, sending your correspondence by certified mail so the company cannot deny receiving your letter at a later date.
Review Your Policy
Most claims are actually denied due to administrative errors. It could be that the policy was filed incorrectly, or a field was misspelled or left blank due to human error. To find out if this applies to your claim, review your policy details and find out exactly what is covered.
Once you have reviewed the policy, if you still believe that you have a valid claim, you will have to begin the appeal process.
Appeal the Decision
Insurers have an internal appeals process where they will review the initial decision. If the claim was denied due to an administrative mistake or human error, the appeals process should rectify this.
Take Your Case to a Legal Attorney
If the appeals process does not yield results, take your case to a legal attorney. When you visit the attorney, bring any written or recorded correspondence you have had with the insurers, as well as the policy details, and any evidence you have which demonstrates the insurance company should pay out on the claim.
There are plenty of legal firms that specialise in car accident cases. For example, Derrick Law Firm offers professional legal services in Myrtle Beach.
Contact the State Regulator
The National Association of Insurance Commissioners has a list of who to contact within your state. Some states have independent ombudsmen who investigate disputed claims. Each state will have a department of insurance which you can appeal to and present your case.
Don’t Give Up
Going up against an insurance company over a denied claim is infuriating, time-consuming, and emotionally taxing. It will be painstaking recording all correspondences and phone calls, as well as intricately combing over your policy.
There may be challenges down the road, but it pays to remain determined. The law is on your side, and most insurance appeals are invested thoroughly and handled correctly by insurance regulators. It will take time, but your case will be considered. Stay on top of your insurance company and be meticulous in recording your communications.