Insurance policies are supposed to give you peace of mind. But sometimes insurance companies don’t keep their promises, leaving people without the money they were counting on to replace what they lost.
If you have had an insurance claim denied and think your company is acting in bad faith, talk to a South Dakota insurance bad faith attorney to find out what you can do. Meanwhile, see if you can relate to these examples of insurance bad faith.
Woman Hurt in Crash Sues Her Auto Insurer for Bad Faith Denial of Claim
A woman was hurt when an uninsured driver ran a stop sign and crashed into her car. Hospitalized for over a week, she received intensive care and multiple blood transfusions. After discharge, she was unable to work for weeks. Financial damages alone exceeded $70,000, and she had lasting physical and emotional effects from her injuries.
She had uninsured motorist (UM) coverage on her auto policy, so she turned to her own insurer for help. However, the insurer refused to pay most of her UM claim until she started a lawsuit. With a lawsuit pending, the company eventually paid the full amount of her UM coverage, and later paid an additional amount to compensate for what she claimed was the company’s unreasonable delay in paying her benefits in the first place.
Homeowners Recover from Insurer for Damaged Roof
When hail and wind damaged one couple’s roof, they had extraordinary difficulty trying to get their homeowners’ insurer to pay sufficient attention to the loss. The adjuster reported minimal damage and his estimate seemed far too low. A local contractor surveyed the damage and advised the homeowners their entire roof should be replaced. Resulting phone calls and emails went unanswered, and follow-up from the company did not happen as promised. A second adjuster eventually identified more damage, but the company then denied it was storm damage.
After suing their own company, the homeowners finally recovered the cost of replacing the roof damaged in the storm. They also received additional compensation to settle their claim that the company had handled their claim in bad faith.
Injured Man Sues Workers Comp Insurer for Wrongful Denial of Benefits
A man was delivering a 275-pound sofa for a furniture store when the sofa fell off a truck and hit him on his head and shoulders. He was knocked to the ground, unconscious, and the next day began treating for neck and back injuries. Doctors and therapists attested to his injuries and an MRI confirmed a herniated disk. However, the worker’s comp insurer hired a doctor to perform an “independent” medical exam. The hired expert claimed the man’s injury was mild and temporary, so the insurer denied further benefits without questioning the opinion or why it was at odds with the information from treating medical professionals.
The SD Dept. of Labor rejected the hired expert’s opinion and ordered work comp benefits paid. The man then sued the insurance company for denying benefits without a reasonable basis, and the South Dakota Supreme Court ruled that relying without question on the opinions of a hired expert could be considered by a jury to have been in “bad faith.”
If these situations sound familiar, it may be time to talk to a South Dakota insurance bad faith attorney. Whether you want to know how to fight a homeowner’s insurance claim denial or want legal advice on the denial of your auto accident claim, contact Turbak Law Office, P.C. today at 605-886-8361.