Insurance. We all need to have it. We pay the insurance companies a premium to cover losses in the event that they happen. Moreover, those premiums are paid with the understanding and expectation that, if a loss is to happen, the insurance company will step up and pay for any losses that are supposed to have been covered.
What happens if there is a loss, and the insurance company doesn’t want to pay it? Your insurance company is under an obligation (contractual and otherwise) to act in good faith in resolving a dispute with you. This doesn’t mean they have to agree with you on every matter, but it does mean that they are expected and required to try to work with you within the confines of the policy they provided that you paid for.
So What Is Bad Faith?
In an extreme case, bad faith might be something as egregious as witness tampering, fraud, or outright dishonesty. But bad faith might also be negotiating a settlement for unreasonably low values or by using unfair settlement techniques.
In its simplest form, an insurance company is required to act in good faith as stated above. This means that if they are going to deny a claim, they must do so with a reasonable basis. It does not mean that mistakes can’t be made, or that there can be no errors on the part of the company. It does however, mean that the company is bound to make thorough investigations, gather and examine all relevant facts, and have a sound basis for its denial.
Not every denial is made in bad faith, and even if, for example it is later determined that in the course of the investigation there were errors that might have affected the outcome of the claim, that does not automatically mean the company acted in bad faith. If, those errors were identified and hidden during the investigation, that would be a different situation altogether.
What Do You Do If You Believe Your Insurance Company Acted In Bad Faith?
The first thing you need to do if you believe that your insurance company is not fairly dealing with you is contact Car Accident Help sponsored by Maples, Nix, and Diesselhorst. They may be able to advise and counsel Oklahoma bad faith insurance victims on their legal rights and remedies available. Contact Car Accident Help at (405) 285-4357.