When you suffer injuries and property damage in a car accident, you hope the insurance company will approve your claim quickly. Both medical treatment and car repairs can be costly. Therefore, if the crash was not your fault, the at-fault party should have to foot the bill. Unfortunately, insurance companies deny claims for a variety of reasons even though they are governed by strict laws. While some reasons are valid, others aren’t, so you can still fight for compensation. If your claim has been denied and you’re not sure what to do next, you should consult a car accident attorney in Albany, GA. Even though it may seem like a lost cause, you may still be able to get the damages you deserve. The first step is to know exactly why your claim was denied.
Why Your Car Accident Claim Could Get Denied
Knowing why your claim was rejected will help you to determine whether you can successfully appeal. If the other driver’s policy doesn’t cover your type of claim, there’s little you can do. Similarly, if their policy lapsed because they didn’t make their payments on time, you won’t be able to get compensation. Also, sometimes even though the car was insured, the driver wasn’t covered under the policy. In these cases, you’ll have to work with your attorney to find alternative ways to recover damages.
However, sometimes, the insurance company disputes whether their client was liable. They may even accuse you of causing the accident by speeding or driving while distracted.
Claims also get denied because of errors on the form or a lack of supporting documentation. A car accident lawyer can help you to prepare a new form and provide all the evidence the insurance company needs. If the denial is unfounded, you generally have three options for disputing it.
How to Respond to a Denied Claim
If you weren’t working with a Georgia automobile accident attorney all along, you need to hire one. You’ll need help in understanding your legal rights and fighting for what you deserve. An experienced attorney will know how to analyze your situation and respond appropriately. Let’s look at the most common responses.
Writing a Letter to the Insurance Company
When an insurance company denies a claim, they usually provide instructions on how to appeal. You’ll need to respond with supporting documentation and be specific about why they were wrong to reject your claim. Your attorney may ask you to gather photos of the accident scene, evidence of your injuries, and police reports. Insurers are required by law to respond to your appeal within a specific time frame. If the appeal concerns expenses for medical treatment you’ve already received, they have 60 days. If it’s for medical treatment you’re yet to receive, they have 30 days. Meanwhile, if you’ve filed a claim for urgent care, the insurance provider must respond within 72 hours.
Filing a Bad Faith Insurance Claim
Insurance companies are supposed to have legitimate reasons for denying claims. If an insurer knows their client is at fault and no policy exclusions apply, they should honor your claim. If they don’t, they may be acting in bad faith. Bullying, violating the state’s insurance code or not providing a solid reason for denial can trigger a bad faith claim. These claims aren’t automatically honored but they can get the company to reverse its decision. Be sure to keep a record of all communication you have with the insurance company to assist with your claim. You will need to work with a car accident lawyer to help determine if this is a route you can pursue.
Filing a Lawsuit Against the Other Driver
If you don’t get any success from engaging the insurance company, you may still have another option. Your attorney may recommend that you file a lawsuit against the driver who caused the accident. In most cases, you won’t go all the way to trial and damages will be negotiated out of court. If necessary, a trial will be the ultimate step to get you the compensation you deserve.
Contact Joe Durham Jr. P.C. to Discuss Your Denied Car Accident Claim
Car accidents can result in lots of pain, frustration, and expenses. If your insurance claim was denied, reach out to a Georgia auto accident law firm before you give up. You may have options that you aren’t aware of. At Joe Durham Jr. P.C. we’ll assess your case and help you decide on the next steps. Contact us today to schedule a consultation.