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Bad Faith Claims and Insurance Companies

Just about every person we talk to has endured a difficult time when dealing with an insurance company. Whether dealing with an automobile accident or homeowners claim, it seems that some insurers will do whatever it takes to reduce payments related to a claim. In extreme situations, you may have a right to file a bad faith claim against the insurance company.

Bad faith claims in Tennessee can occur when an insurance company is deliberately acting in an unethical manner to avoid having to pay your claim. We’re not referring to instances in which an insurance company is dragging their feet by not calling you for a few days post-accident or incident, but rather instances where the company or representative are willfully refusing to cooperate or pay a claim they should have rightfully resolved within a reasonable period of time. Instances of insurance company bad faith are:

  • Refusing to pay a claim after an investigation has been concluded, finding their insured to be at fault
  • Failing to timely investigate and adjust a claim. Simply put, insurance companies, once notified of a potential claim, cannot let said claim sit for months without investigating the matter.
  • Systematic denial of all claims. Some insurance companies refuse to pay any claims, or certain types of claims, for no valid reason.
  • Ignoring the best interests and wishes of their insured. Insurance companies may also be subject to bad faith litigation when they refuse to act upon the wishes of their insured in resolving a claim or when they act against the best interest of their insured.
  • Lying about or failing to disclose the coverage offered by the policy of their insured. If an insurance company is caught lying about the amount of coverage that exists on their policy, or what coverages the policy allows for, then they could be subject to a bad faith claim.

The above are only a few general examples that could be seen as bad faith on the part of the insurance company. It is important to understand that bad faith claims are a separate cause of action from the underlying claim. Therefore, a client can collect from the original claim or injuries in addition to a suitable amount as determined by the court for the bad faith exhibited by the insurance company. Bad faith claims are designed to punish and prohibit insurance companies from acting in an outrageous manner. The awards in Tennessee related to bad faith claims are typically determined by a jury.

If you have a question related to your insurance company claim, feel free to contact an attorney at The Chiozza Law Firm for a no risk consultation. Understanding the nuances and details of insurance work can require expert legal representation. The Chiozza Law Firm has a long history representing those injured at the hands of another. Our fee guarantee simply states that if we aren’t successful in obtaining a judgement or settlement on your behalf then you owe us nothing. During litigation we pay for all expenses related to your case. You will never pay a dime during the legal process so that you can concentrate on your family and health. Call 901-526-9494 to learn how www.901Law.com and The Chiozza Law Firm can help you.

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Posted by Brian Chiozza at 1:21 PM

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