San Diego Premises and Property Insurance Claims
If a company loses property or suffers economic loss due to covered events, such as burglary, severe weather, or fire damage, property insurance will come into play to cover the resulting losses. When businesses encounter bad faith practices when filing their premises and property insurance claims, the results can be catastrophic. It’s also important for business patrons and the general public to know their options after suffering injuries under premises liability law. If you suffer an injury on an insured property, you must have some assurance that filing a lawsuit will be worth the trouble. If the business owner has insufficient assets, then a lawsuit could prove fruitless. However, if the business carries premises liability insurance, it may cover your damages.
When insurance companies process premises and property insurance claims, they must do so in good faith. This requires performing an acceptable investigation of the claim’s validity and adhering to the requirements set forth in the policyholder’s contract. If the insurer is unable to meet these obligations, they are liable for a breach of contract. If the insurer or an employee of the insurer engages in unethical, intimidating, or otherwise unsavory tactics to avoid paying legitimate claims, the insurer is liable for insurance bad faith.
How to File Premises and Property Insurance Claims
The California Department of Insurance offers guidance for filing a premises or property insurance claim, and it’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with these statutes as well as the terms of your policy before starting the claims process. It’s also wise to reach out to an experienced attorney if you want more authority behind your claim. An insurance company is far less likely to engage in any bad faith tactics if the insurance claimant has legal representation throughout the claims process. An attorney can also help draft a formal claim letter to an insurer to start the process.
Examples of Bad Faith Insurance in Premises and Property Claims
Just as a policyholder has an obligation to make his or her premium payments on time, an insurer has an obligation to process claims in good faith. A few examples of bad faith insurance practices in premises and property claims include:
- Misrepresented aspects of a policyholder’s coverage.
- Withholding relevant information about a claimant’s policy, such as additional available coverage for a claim.
- Unreasonable or deliberate delays in processing claims.
- Threatening or intimidating a claimant.
- Offering a lower amount than the claim is worth without justification.
- Denying a claim without justification.
Proving Bad Faith Insurance in Premises and Property Claims
If you experience any of these issues in your dealings with an insurance company, it’s imperative to seek legal representation from a reliable insurance bad faith attorney as soon as possible. An insurance company interfering with a legitimate claim in bad faith can cause catastrophic financial damage, emotional distress, and other economic damages to a claimant. An attorney can help gather the evidence necessary to build a compelling insurance bad faith lawsuit against the insurer. In some cases, simply having your attorney send a formal letter complaining of bad faith can be enough to encourage a more favorable claim result.
Why Do You Need a Lawyer?
Insurance companies typically have in-house legal counsel or retain expensive legal teams. The average person simply does not have the legal training or experience to handle a case against such powerful entities alone. An attorney can handle correspondence with an insurance company as well as any bad faith legal proceedings.
The attorneys at Dawson & Rosenthal specialize in insurance bad faith lawsuits and have built a strong record of successful cases in the San Diego, CA area. Contact our team today if you have questions about a recent premises or property claim or if you suspect an insurance company has handled your claim in bad faith.