Dealing With a Bad Faith Insurance Dispute in Fort Lauderdale, FL
Under Florida law, home insurance providers are required to provide their policyholders with a Homeowner Claims Bill of Rights. This bill of rights is meant to protect homeowners from instances of insurance bad faith, and to ensure that each claim is given the adequate attention that it deserves. If your insurance company denies your home insurance claim, and if you believe that the denial was in any way unfair or wrong, Fort Lauderdale’s home insurance claims lawyers will look into the denial and help you fight their decision.
Fighting a Bad Faith Claim in Fort Lauderdale
Proving bad faith begins with proving that a contract exists between the claimant and the insurance agency (contract meaning policy). If a contract does exist, the insurance agency is required to act in “good faith,” meaning they must thoroughly investigate each claim and provide an honest decision. When an insurance company unreasonably withholds the benefits from a policyholder, or if they withhold benefits when the insured has an undoubtedly valid claim, they are guilty of acting in “bad faith.” Some ways that an insurance company can be guilty of insurance bad faith is when:
- They fail to promptly and thoroughly investigate a claim;
- They deliberately delay payment;
- They unreasonably deny benefits to a claim;
- They refuse to settle a case;
- They fail to reimburse you entirely for your loss; or
- They purposely misinterpret your contract.
If your insurance agency tries to pull any of the above on you, you will not be hard-pressed to file and win a bad faith claim. However, it would be in your best interest to work with an lawyer who understands how bad faith claims work, and what it takes to win a claim of bad faith.
In order to win your claim, there are certain steps you need to take right away so that you do not miss out on your window of opportunity. Below is the list of steps our insurance claims lawyers suggest taking upon being denied your benefits:
- Review your policy to ensure that you thoroughly understand what you are and are not covered for. This is essential for determining whether or not your claim was wrongfully denied
- Review the letter of denial. If the reasoning was ambiguous, ask your insurance adjuster for a clarification of their reasoning for denying you. If they cannot clearly articulate why they denied you your benefits, they probably do not have a valid reason for doing so.
- File an appeal. If, after reviewing your policy and formal letter of denial, you feel that your benefits were wrongly denied, file a claim right away. The longer you wait, the less likely a judge will be to hear your case.
- Consult an insurance bad faith lawyer. Though your case may appear to be cut and dry, insurance companies can be ruthless, and they will not hesitate to utilize lawyers of their own. If you attempt to go against the insurance company’s lawyers on your own, may coerce you into “admitting” something that is bad for your case. In the best case scenario, they may offer you a low-ball settlement and convince you that accepting it is your only option for recovery. At lawyer understands your rights and will aggressively advocate on your behalf until you obtain the settlement you rightfully deserve.
Reach Out to Our Fort Lauderdale Homeowners’ Insurance Claims Lawyer
At The Pendas Law Firm, our homeowners’ insurance claims lawyers have experience in investigating insurance claim denial, preparing cases against insurance agencies guilty of bad faith, and in taking complex claims all the way to trial. When you purchased homeowners’ insurance, you did so with the faith that your home – your most valuable possession – would be covered in the event of a natural disaster or horrible accident. When your insurance company denies you the coverage you so diligently selected and paid for month after month, it can be a devastating blow. Our Fort Lauderdale lawyers see the unjustness of such a situation, and want to help you fight for the compensation you need to restore your home. To speak with a lawyer right away, call 1-888-LPENDAS, or schedule your private consultation online now.
The Pendas Law Firm also serves clients in the Tampa, West Palm Beach, Orlando, Fort Myers, Miami, Daytona, Bradenton, and Jacksonville areas.