We buy car insurance and think we have the protection we need when an accident happens. But, many people face situations where their insurer denies coverage after an accident for a range of reasons.
It is your right to seek representation. For example, hiring attorneys at Wapner Newman will help ensure that you have an advocate when dealing with an insurer who refuses compensation when it is their duty to do so.
Why a Claim Can Be Denied
When a claim is denied, it leads to confusion. However, sometimes the insurance company has a legitimate reason to deny a claim. It is ideal to know the reasons when a denial happens so that you know the difference and can hire an attorney to seek damages and compensation.
Everyone needs to know their policy coverage. It is a choice we make when we purchase vehicle insurance. If a claim exceeds coverage limits, or if the limit has been exhausted, the insurance company can deny your claim.
The type of insurance coverage you choose is important, too. The insurer will not pay a claim if it is filed for coverage that the person did not purchase.
One of the biggest reasons a claim is denied is because the insuree violated the law that led to the accident. A good example of that is if you were driving and texting when the accident occurred.
The last common reason why an insurance company would deny a claim is if you give false or incomplete information when you purchase a policy. For example, if you do not disclose, you are an Uber driver and have an accident while ride-sharing.
Best Practices When an Accident Happens
The first thing that anyone involved in an accident should do is seek medical attention. It is not only for your well-being but also for ensuring that the insurance company will not question when and where your injuries happened.
Exchange information with anyone else also involved in the car accident. It is for your own records in case a dispute comes up.
When the initial collision happens, call law enforcement to report it. The police are the ones that decipher who is at fault for the accident. Be sure to get the contact information for the officer and other witnesses to avoid confusion later.
The next step is to report the accident to your insurance company as soon as you can. Any delay in reporting seems suspicious and gives an insurer a way to deny a claim. Take photos to send to the insurance company. The good news is that most car insurance companies have online submission forms or apps to make the process smoother.
Finally, review your policy so you can fill in forms with accurate information that the insurance company cannot question.
Steps in Case of Denial
You have followed the rules and done your part after a car accident, and an insurer is refusing to cover an accident. It is your right to find an attorney to help you negotiate with the insurance company. A professional lawyer will help guide you through the process and help with the steps you will need to take.
It is likely an attorney will first draft and send a demand letter. It is a formal letter detailing your side of the story, will state the dollar amount sought, and explain why the other driver was at fault. The process compels an insurance company to be more specific when it comes to why they denied the claim. It may lead to a reversal of the initial decision.
However, if it does not, the next step is the formal appeals process. During this process, the insurance company and your attorney will negotiate. It sometimes includes arbitration.
Finally, if an insurer denies your attorney’s claim, a lawsuit is the only action left you can take. Keep in mind, if your lawyer does not feel like they can achieve a positive result, they are likely not to enter the litigation stage.
Your Rights When Dealing with a Coverage Denial
After an accident, there seem to be a million things happening at once, and it often turns into a confusing time. Contacting an attorney is sometimes the only way to ensure you have an advocate for when the chaos becomes too much to handle.
Do your research and never hesitate to ask your potential representation questions about the process. It is best to know the facts and gather all the information before hiring an attorney. You do not want to take this journey alone, and you need the best lawyer for the job.