The payments you make for your policy are an agreement between you and the insurer: The insurance company will provide the protection you are paying for when it is needed, and they will negotiate and settle claims "in good faith." This phrase means both parties in the contract – you and the insurance company – will deal honestly with each other and with sincere intentions.
Insurance bad faith claims involve insurance companies who have dealt with a claim in an unfair, dishonest way. Find more details below about what does and does not qualify as bad faith dealings.
For individualized answers about your situation, please call the experienced attorneys at Whetstone Perkins & Fulda. We provide free case evaluations by phone, at (803) 828-6100. Our law firm and lawyers serve areas across South Carolina.
What Are Bad Faith Insurance Dealings?
These situations may apply to just about any type of insurance:
It's normal for there to be a negotiation or some back-and-forth between you and the insurance adjuster. You and the adjuster may not agree how much your claim is worth. You may not be offered what you think you deserve. These things alone do not necessarily point to bad faith dealings.
Instead, an insurance bad faith claim usually arises when the insurance company denies, delays or reduces your settlement, but does not provide reasons or justification for doing so, or otherwise does so in an unfair way.
Specifically, here is what bad faith dealings may look like:
- Cancelation of your policy without explanation
- Incorrectly denying your claim for being invalid under your policy
- Dragging their feet on the investigation of your claim
- Failing to pay your claim in a reasonably timely manner
- Reducing the benefits you should be getting
- Denying or reducing a settlement without explanation
Additionally, if the insurance company refuses or fails to account for important evidence in your claim, or doesn't listen to expert testimony that could affect your claim, then bad faith negotiations may be taking place.
An Aggressive Advocate on Your Side
You pay responsibly for your insurance policy every month, with the expectation that the protection offered by your policy will be there when you need it the most. Unfortunately, insurance companies often place profits over the best interests of their customers. Even when they aren't negotiating in bad faith, they may try to get a claimant to accept a lower offer than he or she deserves. You should get the full benefits you are due for the injury and damage you have suffered.
It can be a daunting feeling, when your own insurance company becomes your rival at the very time you need them to look out for you. Rely on our attorneys to fight for what is in your best interest. We have extensive experience with bad faith claims in South Carolina, so we know what to look for and how to advise you on next steps. We also know the tactics commonly utilized by insurance companies and we do not back down to powerful opponents.
For your free case evaluation, please call Whetstone Perkins & Fulda at (803) 828-6100. We have three law firm locations to better serve the people of our state, in Columbia, Myrtle Beach and Kingstree.