If you are injured, you can often claim on insurance. If left to their own devices, insurance companies would probably find excuses to avoid paying out every claim ever submitted to them. After all, paying a claim diminishes their profit margin for a policy.
Both federal laws and Pennsylvania state statutes impose rules that insurance companies have to follow when someone makes a claim. There are multiple ways that insurance companies can violate these laws by mistreating claimants who need insurance coverage.
What does bad faith insurance look like?
Delayed or denied claims
Sometimes, insurance companies will simply refuse to pay someone’s claim despite the circumstances clearly aligning with the policy documents. Other times, insurance companies will approve a claim but will then delay sending payment for weeks or possibly months. These unscrupulous behaviors force the people making claims to appeal or go to court to get the coverage they need.
Low settlement offers
Insurance companies can wash their hands of liability for someone’s losses if they settle the claim. People will often accept far less in a lump sum settlement than their claim is worth. If the insurance company manipulated you into accepting a fraction of the coverage available and the total costs you incurred, their behavior might constitute bad faith practices.
Changing the policy rules during a claim
Many people double-check their policies before submitting a claim to know exactly what to expect. If your insurance company sends you a letter advising you that the policy changed and your deductible is twice what it was before, that would be a bad faith practice if it applies to your current claim.
If you are struggling with an insurer acting in bad faith after you filed a personal injury claim, seek legal help to understand what you can do about it.