Disability insurance provides financial relief to employees who can’t work temporarily due to a disability. Short-term policies offer the worker a portion of their salary if they’re unable to work for three to six months, while long-term policies are for those who need more than six months to recover.
However, plenty of insurance companies aim to pay out as little as possible, which puts you at a disadvantage. If your insurance provider fails or refuses to process, investigate, or pay your claim, you have the right to file a lawsuit for bad faith insurance.
It’s critical to know the signs that your insurance is attempting to low-ball you. These four red flags tell you that it’s time to seek the counsel of an experienced disability insurance lawyer and bring your case to court.
1. Changing your policy term
Some companies modify the terms of your policy to create a loophole that would let them deny or reduce your settlement. Often, they make the changes without notifying you and hide them behind confusing jargon.
It’s important to keep your copy of your original insurance contract and any succeeding amendments to protect yourself from this kind of deception. This will allow you to compare the documents and determine if the insurance company changed your policy term without your knowledge.
2. Not acknowledging your claim or your evidence
The elements of bad faith claims differ per state, but one of the most common factors is the insurance company’s failure to acknowledge your claim or even the evidence you provide. Although this is not conclusive evidence of bad faith, it can help you build your case.
When your insurer ignores your medical receipts, hospital bills, or damage estimates, it may be a sign that they are planning to reduce or reject your claim. Some companies will also try to dispute your medical claims, weakening your case by arguing that your disability or injuries are not as severe as you say.
3. Offering a quick settlement
Some injuries may not immediately show symptoms. Traumatic brain injuries, for example, may have subtle symptoms that lead to severe eventual impairment.
Insurance companies have enough experience to understand that some disabilities take time to manifest. So they will rush the process and offer you a quick settlement before you get a clearer picture of the extent of your injuries.
4. Advising you not to seek legal counsel
This is the most alarming sign that your insurance provider is trying to low-ball you. It can be an attempt to keep you uninformed of your legal rights and options, which prevents you from fully understanding the terms of your policy.
They will try to convince you that lawyers are expensive, which only adds to your medical bills. But this is not always true. Some insurance attorneys work on a contingency basis, so you don’t have to pay them if you lose the case.
You want a capable lawyer by your side to make sure that you understand your policy, your paperwork is accurate and complete, and your case is as solid as possible.
Disability Insurance Lawyer in Los Angeles
At Haffner Law, our disability attorneys are experienced and aggressive in dealing with bad faith insurance. We will guide you throughout the process and gather as much evidence to establish a strong case. Our lawyers will also assist you in appealing a rejected claim, helping you fight for the settlement you deserve.
We offer a free, no-obligation consultation. Contact us at 1-844-HAFFNER (213-514-5681), and let’s discuss your case.
(This is an attorney advertisement by Joshua Haffner)