Being injured in an accident is oftentimes a scary and traumatic order, but the battle doesn’t end there. In almost all cases, getting the compensation you need to pay for your medical bills and lost wages means dealing with the at-fault driver’s insurance company which may deny a claim.
This is no easy feat, especially if you’re doing it by yourself. Insurance companies are, first and foremost, businesses. When they have to pay out injury claims, this means that they lose money and profit. Naturally, this also means that they will go to any means necessary to deny paying out valid personal injury claims.
This can leave you, the injured accident victim, in a scary and confusing spot. But, the denial is not necessarily the last word on the matter. Below, we discuss some common reasons for claim denials and how our firm can help ensure the insurance company pays up where they should.
Common Reasons For An Insurance Company To Deny a Claim
Insurance adjusters are typically very good at their jobs and know exactly what to look for in order to find a reason to deny your claim. Here are some common reasons for denial that they may use:
- Policy Exclusion. The insurance company may claim that the injury you sustained is excluded from coverage due to a technicality that is briefly or vaguely described. These policy exclusions are often hidden in small print, and you may not even know about them until you need coverage.
- Lapse of Coverage. Certain types of insurance coverage expire and are not automatically renewed each year. The insurance company may say that the coverage is expired and does not cover your injuries since the accident took place after this time.
- Delay in Treatment. If you wait to seek medical treatment after an accident, the insurance company may claim there is no way to show that your injuries were caused in the accident. This is why it’s so important to seek medical treatment immediately after your accident.
- Limited or No Medical Records. When you seek medical treatment after the accident, your doctor should include notes in your medical records about how your injuries were sustained. The insurance company may claim that your medical records do not directly indicate that your injuries were caused in the accident.
- Determining Liability. The insurance company may claim that you, not the driver they insure, were the one whose reckless driving caused the accident. If they determine that you are liable, they can deny your claim.
- Failure to Avoid/Mitigate the Injury. If you do not seek medical treatment or listen to your doctor’s orders for treatment, the insurance company may claim that you purposefully failed to take the steps you needed to get better or avoid additional injuries. They can deny your claim if they deem this is the case.
Bad Faith Insurance In Mississippi
While some injury claims are denied due to reasons that the insurance company deems valid, many of these denials are made when the insurance company acts in “bad faith.” Bad faith insurance is when the insurance company wrongfully delays, denies, or devalues a claim.
Under Mississippi law, insurance companies have a legal obligation to a “duty of good faith and fair dealing.” This obligation is implied in all insurance policies in the state and includes promptly and fairly investigating all claims and treating you, the policyholder, fairly and honestly.
Common types of bad faith insurance include:
- Unreasonable delays
- Failure to conduct a reasonable investigation
- Offering less money than what the claim is worth
- Not providing reasons for denial
- Misrepresenting the law or the policy coverage
Unfortunately, not all insurance companies abide by this legal obligation, and injury victims are the ones who suffer. If you believe that the insurance company purposefully denied your claim, you should contact a personal injury attorney with experience handling cases of bad faith insurance.
Protecting Your Rights To Compensation
If you’re injured in an accident, you don’t want to go against the insurance company by yourself. Adjusters have the insurance company’s best interest in mind and will do anything they can to prevent paying injury victims the compensation they need to heal.
At Chatham Gilder Howell Pittman, our team of personal injury attorneys has nearly 100 years of combined legal experience. We will negotiate with the insurance company on your behalf to ensure your rights to fair and full compensation are thoroughly protected.
Let us be your voice during a difficult time. Contact Chatham Gilder Howell Pittman to schedule your free consultation. We are still operating from home amid the outbreak of COVID-19 and can provide virtual case reviews and remote legal services.