Sedona Insurance Law Blog

Typical ways an insurer commits an act of bad faith insurance

Bad faith insurance seems like a complicated legal topic, but conceptually it is very simple. Bad faith insurance occurs when an insurance companies fails to act in accordance with the laws to which they are bound and when they fail to uphold their clients needs under the implied covenant of good faith. More simply, bad faith insurance just means that an insurance company didn't follow through on the promises they made in your policy, or they acted in an illegal manner.

Based on this, what are some examples of actions or behaviors that constitute bad faith insurance on the part of the insurer? One classic example is that the insurer fails to follow proper protocol for an individual's claim. Perhaps they didn't fully investigate your claim, or they denied your claim without telling you why they came to that decision.

Does my homeowner insurance policy cover floods?

With the floods that recently hit Arizona, it is a good time to discuss homeowners insurance and what sort of water damage is covered.

If you assume that your policy will cover you if your house suffers flood damage, you had better double-check. Most policies do not include coverage for flooding.

Arizona Senate approves minimum auto insurance increase

If it becomes law, a new bill before Arizona lawmakers could raise the minimum auto insurance liability drivers must carry for the first time in 45 years.

The Arizona Senate passed the bill by a vote of 18-12 on Feb. 23. According to Mohave Daily News, the bill would require motorists to carry enough liability insurance to cover at least $25,000 in damages due to a single injury or death in a car crash, and $50,000 for multiple fatal or nonfatal injuries. Currently, the law requires $15,000 in coverage for injuries to an individual and $35,000 for multiple victims. These minimums have been in place since 1972.

Arizona House votes to allow discrepancies in policy cover sheets

An insurance policy is a contract. It is frequently quite long, printed in small type and full of dense, confusing language. Because insurance agents and insurers have a legal duty to make sure their clients understand the terms of their policy, usually when you sign up for a policy, you also get a cover letter that summarizes your coverage.

If some Arizona lawmakers get their way, insurers will not be obligated to put the truth on that cover sheet. Under a bill that passed the state House recently, the language of the policy itself would be all that counts, according to The Daily Courier.

Getting fair insurance value for your comic books

Most of us stopped collecting comic books once we became adults -- which might have been a big mistake. Though the market for rare and valuable comic books has varied over the years, some books are currently worth millions of dollars.

Because of this, many serious collectors insure their comic books in case of theft, loss or damage. When it is necessary for a collector to make a claim, how does the insurance company evaluate the value of a comic book?

Woman stuck with $31K bill due to 'junk' insurance

When an insurance company sells you a policy, it has an obligation to make sure you understand its terms. Misleading or dishonest statements or language in the policy could lead to a terrible shock when you try to submit a claim you think will be paid.

For example, a woman from outside of Arizona says she was the victim of a health insurance scam. She was hit with a $31,000 hospital bill because the insurance she bought was much more limited than the company led her to believe.

What to do after a bad faith insurance denial

After being denied a claim by your insurance company, it is natural to feel frustrated, confused and upset. If you suspect what happened to you goes beyond a simple denial into bad faith on the insurance company’s part, there are steps you can take to help build your case and seek compensation.

A recent article in USA TODAY has some useful tips for what to do after you believe you have been wrongfully denied an insurance claim. Here is a summary:

Court rejects State Farm appeal of bad faith verdict

Insurance companies have deep pockets when it comes to advertising. All of us in Arizona have seen slick TV commercials from State Farm and its competitors that use humor, drama and celebrity endorsements to try to convince us to buy insurance policies from them.

However, these companies did not become so wealthy by putting their customers’ needs above profits. Sometimes, they act in bad faith in order to avoid paying a rightful claim, and get caught in the act.

Report: Arizona's insurance regulators lack budget funds

Often, Arizona consumers have no reasonable way of knowing that a company is not treating them right until after they have been injured financially, physically or both. Dealing with the insurance industry is no different. An insurance company could seem to be honest and eager to be there for you, only to act in bad faith when you make a claim.

Standing in between unscrupulous insurance companies and their customers is the Arizona Department of Insurance, which regulates the insurance industry in the state. But is it doing its job effectively?

When fine art and insurance collide

For most artists, their work is deeply personal. Even after they sell a piece to a collector, in a sense the work still belongs to the artist; certainly, it represents an expression of the way the artist perceives the world, and will always be associated with him or her.

The Visual Artists Rights Act of 1990 (VARA) recognizes the unique relationship between art and artist. Under the federal statute, after selling a sculpture, painting or other piece of visual art, the artist still retains the right to “prevent any intentional distortion, mutilation, or other modification” that would affect the artist’s “honor or reputation.” Artists retain this right for life.

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