Focused on assisting policyholders when their insurance companies wrongfully deny or underpay their insurance claims.
If your insurance company has refused to pay your claim, has paid less than it should, or is otherwise not paying your claim properly, then you should immediately consult an attorney experienced in resolving property insurance claims.
Property Insurance Claims
If you believe that your insurance claim has not properly paid your insurance claim, you are probably right. You cannot assume that your insurance company is acting in your best interests. The insurance claim adjustment process puts the insurance company in charge of deciding how much it should pay you on your claim. Obviously, it benefits the insurance company’s bottom line to pay less on a claim rather than more. It is hardly surprising that insurance companies often pay less on claims than they should, or even improperly deny claims altogether. Insurance companies have come up with many improper ways to evade paying the full amount they owe, which can include: denying the claim on the basis of confusing policy language; paying less than it would actually cost to have a real-world contractor to do the work; paying for part but not all of the damage; telling the insured that the damage is not covered by the policy; paying only an over-depreciated amount; and hiring unscrupulous “engineers” to state that some or all of the damage was actually caused by deterioration, incorrect installation, or lack of maintenance. Common examples of improper claim adjustment include:
- Adopting an unreasonable interpretation of a policy exclusion;
- Failing to conduct a proper investigation of your claim;
- Paying only a portion of the insurance benefits due to you;
- Refusing to pay your claim on a timely basis; and
- Denying your claim for an improper reason.
If you disagree with any of the insurance company’s stated reasons for paying for less than it owes you, then you should immediately consult an experienced property insurance lawyer to learn your rights and discuss your options.
Bad Faith Insurance Practices
The laws of your state provide you with protections against insurance carriers which wrongfully deny or underpay insurance claims. The law imposes rules that the insurance carriers are supposed to follow when interpreting the language of the policy. They are not allowed to adopt a narrow interpretation if certain language is unclear, and quite often, language in an insurance policy is unclear. Insurance carriers are also not allowed to unreasonably delay the investigation and resolution of your claim, or to improperly underpay a claim. If an insurance carrier withholds insurance benefits in “bad faith,” they can be held liable for damages in excess of the limits of the insurance for acting in a malicious, fraudulent, or oppressive manner.
What We Do for Our Clients
The experienced property insurance attorneys at Baker Nicholson will provide you with an initial, no-cost consultation to determine whether you can benefit from retaining our law firm to represent you regarding your claim. Your attorney will review your insurance policy and other pertinent documents, listen to your history of the claim, and discuss the details of your claim. If your attorney determines that you can benefit from legal representation by our law firm, your attorney will discuss the various options open to you, and the benefits and drawbacks of each option. Such options may include having the attorney write a letter to the insurance company disputing its decision; invoking contractual processes such as appraisal or arbitration; initiating informal negotiation or mediation; commencing litigation; or something else. Your attorney will explain which options are optimum for your claim.
We Don't Get Paid Until You Do
Baker Nicholson generally represents property insurance clients on a contingency fee basis. You pay Baker Nicholson only a percentage of what they recover for you, plus expenses. That means that you don’t have to pay any attorney fees unless you recover more money, and until you get paid that money. Your attorney will explain also all fees and expenses at the initial consultation. Your attorney will provide you with a written representation agreement to review at your leisure, and will answer any questions you may have about the agreement