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Dawson and Rosenthal
Dawson and Rosenthal

Why you need an attorney in insurance bad faith

Insurance law is very complicated. Proving that your insurance company treated your claim with bad faith usually involves careful investigation of the insurance policy, the paper trail and the relevant statutes. Without an attorney with plenty of experience handling insurance bad faith litigation, you are going to have a hard time proving even a seemingly open-and-shut case.

In an example of a case from outside of Arizona, the Texas Supreme Court has laid out five rules for insurance bad faith cases that involve a specific set of circumstances. In the underlying case, a homeowner successfully sued USAA Texas Lloyds for refusing to pay her claim following Hurricane Ike.

The jury awarded the homeowner damages after finding that USAA used unfair and deceptive practices by not conducting a reasonable investigation of the damage to her home. However, the jury did not find USAA guilty of breach of contract.

The insurance company appealed and the case wound up before the state supreme court. As part of its decision reversing the trial verdict, the court set out five rules related to contractual and “extra-contractual claims” in insurance, Claims Journal reports. Basically, the ruling prohibits recovery of policy benefits as damages for an insurance company’s statutory violation, with several exceptions.

You may not know exactly what the insurance company did, but it is often easy to see that you were entitled to payment and the insurance company did not deliver. If this has happened to you, you could be facing massive bills that you should not have to pay on your own. Talk to an attorney about your legal options.