Insurance is intended to provide you with peace of mind. It is supposed to be there when you are injured or your property is damaged. You faithfully pay your insurance premiums and expect your insurance company to compensate you for your losses; however, insurance companies are not always forthright when investigating your insurance claim or making payment. This is because insurance companies are in the business of making money and the less the insurance company pays to its insureds, the more money the insurance companies make.
Florida “Bad Faith” Insurance Law
Under Florida law, insurance companies are required to act in good faith when investigating, adjusting and settling your claims. If your insurance company engages in improper claims handling practices while adjusting your claim, then the insurer is referred to as having acted in “bad faith.” This is a basis for a lawsuit separate and apart from the lawsuit regarding your insurance claim and can result in additional compensation to you. Even a settlement by the insurer can be the basis of a claim against the insurer for bad faith. Some common examples of actions that may be considered bad faith include:
- failing to thoroughly or properly investigate your claim in a timely manner;
- unreasonable stall tactics including a delay in payment of your claim, slow claims adjustment, or numerous requests for documents without explaining the reasons or the relevance of the documents requested;
- failing to pay the full value of your claim;
- unreasonable claim denials;
- misrepresenting policy provisions or coverage to the insured; and
- unreasonable interpretation of policy language.
It is important to hire a competent bad faith lawyer when pursuing a bad faith claim or you run the risk of jeopardizing your recovery of damages. If you feel that your insurance company has acted in bad faith regarding your insurance claim, then it may be time for you to contact a South Florida bad faith attorney to discuss your claim.
If you would like a free consultation, then please contact my office at (954)509-3826 or fill out the consultation form and my office will contact you.