If you have a valid and enforceable insurance policy in California, the insurance company owes you an implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing. This means that it must handle your claim fairly and reasonably. Acting in "bad faith" may involve the insurance company denying benefits to which you are entitled.
If you believe your insurance company acted in bad faith in handling your insurance claim in the Sacramento area, you should obtain the assistance of the experienced Sacramento bad faith insurance claim attorneys at Piering Law Firm.
Examples of Bad Faith Insurance Claims
Under California law, bad faith can take a variety of forms. If you feel like your insurance company is handling your claim unreasonably, there may be an issue of bad faith.
Below are some common examples of bad faith:
- Failure to investigate: You pay for insurance coverage for a reason and expect your insurance company to try to help you, not attempt to avoid paying your claim. The insurance company has a duty to investigate your claim thoroughly and failure to do so may constitute bad faith.
- Failure to authorize or pay for necessary medical treatment: If a medical professional deems you need certain treatment after an accident and the insurance company claims it is not medically necessary, this is an act of bad faith.
- Failure to follow California insurance regulations: In California, the California Department of Insurance makes regulations that insurance companies are required to follow. The California Fair Claims Settlement Practices Regulations specifically sets for particular requirements for insurance adjusters when they process your claim. Failure to follow these regulations may be bad faith.
- Refusing a valid claim or offering less than you are owed: An insurance company cannot decline payment of your claim with an unreasonable justification or no explanation at all. The insurance company is obligated to pay the full value of your claim. Either of these actions likely qualifies as bad faith by the insurance company.
- Delaying in answering your claim: An insurance company is generally expected to accept or deny your claim within 40 days. An unreasonable or unjustified delay can be the basis for a bad faith claim.
- Failure to provide legal representation if you get sued: Most insurance policies contain a duty of the insurance company to defend if you are sued for an incident covered under your policy. It is bad faith for your insurance company to refuse to pay for an attorney and other costs necessary to defend you.
- Refusing to pay after the California Department of Insurance has determined your claim to be valid: When the California Department of Insurance has gotten involved and has determined that you have a valid claim under your policy, some insurance companies will still refuse to pay. If this happens, you will want to get assistance from a qualified lawyer to pursue a bad faith claim.
Contact a Sacramento Lawyer Who Will Protect Your Rights
If your California insurance company handles your insurance claim in bad faith, you are entitled to all damages caused by this bad faith conduct, including emotional distress, lost income, lost opportunity, insurance attorney fees, interest, and other types of damages.
All cases are handled on a contingent fee basis, meaning there is no legal fee charged until we recover for you. Talk with an ethical and dedicated Sacramento bad faith insurance lawyer committed to your recovery. We will be with you all the way.
If you have a claim under a California insurance policy and you need guidance on how to proceed, or if you need assistance dealing with the insurance company, we invite you to contact the Piering Law Firm to schedule your free and confidential initial consultation. You can also reach us by telephone by calling the office at (916) 476-2399.
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Complex wrongful death motorcycle accident involving product liability claims against both helmet and motorcycle luggage manufacturers.
Motorcycle vs. automobile collision resulting in below knee amputation. Client was riding motorcycle and defendant pulled out in front of him, resulting in a severe injury to client's leg, which ultimately led to the amputation of his leg, just below the knee.
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Against Bar/Security Company
34-year-old software sales associate out with friends drinking at a bar in San Francisco. After a few hours, he leaves the bar to go home and gets in an argument outside of the club with a security guard.
Recovery for the victim of a rear-end traffic collision with a big rig that resulted in a neck injury.
Verdict received after trial for the victim of a rear-end traffic collision involving a commercial trucking company.
A policy limit settlement involving a head-on collision on a notoriously dangerous stretch of highway between State Highway 99 in Sacramento and Marysville, commonly known as "blood alley".
Pedestrian Wrongful Death
The defendant's primary limits of $250,000 were tendered in response to a conditional limit demand that required disclosure of all other coverages. The defendant had an excess policy of $1,000,000.00 which was tendered along with the primary limits.
John listened to me, gave great advice, put together a plan then followed through.”