Why You Can’t Trust Your Insurer After an Auto Accident
Posted on May 25, 2014 in Personal Injury
Insurance is required for drivers, so motorists will pay premiums to an insurance company who will then pay for losses in the event of an accident. The specific insurance coverage you need to have may vary by state, with some drivers required to buy no-fault coverage although this is not mandated in Louisiana. Drivers may also be required to buy collision insurance by a car loan lender or may choose to buy it to protect themselves from loss.
Every driver, however, must have liability insurance coverage to pay for losses that the motorists causes others to experience if the policy older causes an accident. Liability insurance kicks in if the driver does something wrong and is sued or has a claim made against him for compensation for losses. If the driver who causes a crash does not have liability insurance as required, the victims of the collision may be forced to seek compensation from any uninsured or underinsured motorist policies available from their own insurer.
Dealing with an insurance company is never fun, and you should not assume that the insurer who provided your insurance policy will be eager and willing to help you get the money you need to cover your losses. In fact, as a new report from the American Association for Justice shows just how underhanded insurance companies can be when lying to customers and trying to maximize their profits. You need to protect yourself from this behavior, and hiring a New Orleans auto accident attorney is one of the smartest ways to ensure you have a knowledgeable professional standing up to the insurer on your behalf.
Insurers Cannot be Trusted
According to the American Association for Justice, the average profits within the U.S. insurance industry exceed $30 billion. Yet, despite these massive profits, insurance companies want to do everything they can to hold onto income and premiums and to pay out as little as possible. Major insurance companies have patterns of denying claims, delaying payouts to make people desperate for cash, and trying to settle cases for much less than the claims are worth.
Some of the dishonest practices that insurance companies engage in to try to underpay or avoid paying policyholders include:
- Claiming that the loss is not covered, such as one accident where a 60-year-old woman was denied payouts on her $2 million policy because the incident that harmed her was not an “accident.” The insurer claimed that since the driver who caused the collision was acting because of deliberate road rate, the insured’s policy didn’t apply and the policyholder was out of luck for extensive medical bills.
- Offering incentives for denying or delaying payouts. Insurance company employees reportedly receive incentives like pizza parties and gift certificates in order to keep payouts low or avoid making payments.
- Delaying until the policyholder dies. If the victim policyholder is no longer alive to make a claim for covered losses, this may let the insurer off the hook. While this is an especially big problem with long-term care insurance, it could also become an issue after motor vehicle collisions and other incidents where a victim experiences a potentially fatal injury.
These are just some of the many reasons listed in the AAJ report showing why insurers cannot be trusted. Stand up for your rights when dealing with the insurers by contacting the New Orleans auto accident law firm of Bloom Legal today.