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How to Find the Best Insurance Dispute Lawyers in Alpharetta, GA – Morgan & Morgan
Insurance policies are designed to protect and cover us, whether we experience an accident, sustain damage to our homes, or are affected by other covered incidents. If you paid into an insurance policy for years or even decades, you deserve to have a valid claim honored and settled accordingly. Unfortunately, getting what you deserve can be a struggle.
Some insurance companies deny most claims at first, regardless of whether they are valid or not. However, you do not have to stand for this and can take action by seeking legal advice and help. Morgan & Morgan’s insurance disputes lawyers in Alpharetta, GA, know the games insurance companies can play to try and hold on to their profits. We can help you fight for your due. Contact us now to find out how we could help.
Which Cases Do Insurance Disputes Lawyers Handle?
According to Compare.com, the average cost for car insurance is $101 per month in Alpharetta, which is $21 more than the average US car insurance rate. However, when you add up home or renter’s insurance, health insurance, life insurance, and other policies, it becomes clear that we spend a significant chunk of our income on insurance. Insurance dispute lawyers can help you get the coverage you paid for.
Being left out in the cold when you have a valid claim in Alpharetta can be extremely frustrating. However, an insurance disputes lawyer can step in and fight for the payout that you deserve. Cases we handle include, among others:
- Car accident insurance
- Health insurance
- Life insurance
- Long-term care insurance
- Homeowners insurance
- Disability insurance
- Hurricane and windstorm insurance
- Water and fire damage
- Homeowners insurance
- Cast iron pipe damage
- Business property insurance
This is not an exhaustive list. Our attorneys could help you with most insurance disputes. Let us assess your case today and advise you on your legal options.
How to Find the Best Insurance Disputes Lawyers in Alpharetta, GA
Finding the best attorney for your case will involve some research on your behalf. While the biggest advertising budget does not always equal the best lawyers, advertising on TV, in the newspaper, and on the internet can be useful for collecting names of law firms.
Do not forget to ask friends, family members, and attorneys you worked with for referrals. You might be surprised to find out how many of your acquaintances had to deal with denied insurance claims.
Meet Your Lawyer in Person
While emails and phone calls can be an excellent way to get to know a law firm or attorney, try to meet your potential attorney in person at least once before hiring them. Despite the highest accolades and qualifications, they may not be suitable for you. A free first consultation gives you the opportunity to ask questions about the lawyer’s track record with handling insurance disputes and get a feel for their personality.
Insurance Disputes Lawyers Protect You From Manipulative Tactics
Some insurance companies try hard to hold on to profits. Manipulative tactics used to minimize or deny policyholders or other parties fair settlements can include:
Offering a Settlement Immediately
Those who have suffered financial or bodily harm often see it as a good sign when they receive a prompt settlement offer. However, accepting a premature settlement can be a mistake. Insurance companies sometimes make lowball settlement offers while individuals are still vulnerable, in pain, or traumatized after an incident such as a car crash or incurring major hurricane damage. Do not let an insurance company exploit your situation.
Waiting Can Result in a Fair Settlement
Victims in the middle of recovery may not yet know the scope of their injury and future expected medical costs. It can also be next to impossible to determine if and when you could go back to work while in recovery. Likewise, if your property sustained damage in a natural disaster, fire, or another incident, it can take weeks before the scope of the damage becomes apparent.
Waiting until you have reached maximum medical improvement or your financial damages have been assessed can work in your favor. Consider also that you generally sign away the right to legal recourse and additional compensation when accepting a settlement. It is crucial, therefore, that the payout adequately covers all your damages.
Denying or Delaying a Settlement
Insurance companies know that time is generally on their side. Some insurers hope that given time, victims will walk away and give up on their claim.
Delaying a Valid Claim
Insurers understand that victims need a settlement to move on with their lives and pay their bills and expenses. They hope that you will run out of patience and agree to a lower settlement than what you deserve by delaying your claim indefinitely.
Drawing out a claim unnecessarily is unethical and could lead to victims losing legal recourse due to the statute of limitations expiring. According to the Georgia Statute of Limitations 9-3-33, injured victims generally only have two years to file a lawsuit. However, time frames can vary depending on the nature of your insurance claim.
Denying a Valid Claim
An insurance company may even deny your valid claim entirely and refuse to offer you a fair settlement for damages. The insurance company could allege that:
- An accident was your fault
- Your damages are excluded from the insurance policy
- There is not enough evidence for your claim
It is not unusual for an insurance company to try and underpay victims or deny their claims altogether. If this has happened to you, do not give up or despair. An insurer dragging its heels is a sign for you to get active and fight for what you deserve.
While it is understandable to feel overwhelmed and exhausted after suffering damages, help is available. One of our insurance disputes lawyers in Alpharetta, GA, can be here for you, take the burden off your shoulders, and stand up to an unscrupulous insurance company on your behalf.
Asking Victims for Recorded Statements
Providing the at-fault insurance company with a recorded statement can be a bad idea and could significantly harm your case. Insurance companies frequently use recorded statements to their advantage and may even seek to besmirch your character. The dangers of providing a recorded statement can include:
Providing information that an insurer could use to dispute the severity of your injuries and extent of damages
Talking about details of an accident that could later be used against you
Using your recorded statement as an admission of guilt
A statement cannot be taken back once recorded. It is generally advisable to refuse recorded statements and instead ask an attorney for advice on how to proceed with your claim.
Morgan & Morgan
Am I Legally Required to Provide a Recorded Statement?
There is no legal requirement to provide a statement to an insurance company. We discourage individuals from doing so. If your damages are high and there is a lot at stake, it is crucially important to watch your every word and protect your legal rights. Therefore, it is safer to deny any requests for recorded or written statements.
If an insurer contacts you to ask for statements, negotiate a settlement or sign any documents, consider contacting an insurance disputes lawyer in Alpharetta, GA, for help. An experienced attorney from our firm can handle all communication with an insurance company without compromising your rights.
Why Was My Valid Claim Denied?
There can be various reasons why your insurance claim was denied. Valid claim denials can occur if your damage is not covered within the policy you purchased, for example. However, insurance providers are keen to preserve their profits. These days, simply recovering your rightful insurance benefits can feel like trying to get blood out of a stone. An insurance company could claim that:
- Your loss was not due to an accident
- You could have taken action to limit the loss or damage
- The loss is due to wear and tear rather than a covered event
Unfortunately, having to struggle to get what you deserve is not unusual, even if you have a valid claim that is covered under your policy. An insurance disputes lawyer can assess your case and insurance policy to determine whether a claim denial was valid or not.
What Is a Bad Faith Claim?
You could have a bad faith claim if an insurer unreasonably delays or denies you a fair settlement. There can be many ways in which an insurance company could act in bad faith, including:
- Misrepresenting a policy’s contents to avoid paying a claim.
- Failing to disclose policy exclusions to clients prior to insurance purchase
- Making unreasonable demands for policyholders to prove losses covered by the policy
Insurance claims particularly prone to bad faith denials can include:
- House fires and flooding
- Burglary claims
- Hurricane damage
- Vandalism and theft
- Mold damage
- Car accidents and car thefts
However, not all denials or delays of settlements are automatically bad faith claims. You could potentially have a breach of contract or unfair claims denial case, depending on your particular circumstances. Since insurance disputes can be complex, consulting with a lawyer can be helpful to clarify your legal options.
Which Damages Could I Recover From the Insurance Company?
Naturally, policyholders and other individuals denied an insurance payout are first and foremost looking to recover the value of their original claim. However, if an insurance company unreasonably denied or delayed your claim and acted in bad faith, you could be entitled to additional damages.
You could recover any financial losses incurred due to the denial of coverage. Compensatory damages can also include awards for emotional distress, humiliation, or loss of reputation.
If you are forced to sue an insurance company to get what you deserve and win, your payout can include attorneys’ fees.
If an insurer acted particularly egregiously or maliciously in withholding your settlement, they could be awarded punitive damages by a court.
Do I Have to Hire a Lawyer for a Denied Insurance Claim?
Small claims can and do often settle without legal representation. However, when there is a lot of money at stake for a claimant and the insurance company, a fight can be inevitable. This is when a dedicated insurance disputes lawyer can be your best advocate and level the playing field between you and an insurance company with a team of lawyers.
Claims that are more likely to benefit from experienced and qualified legal representation can include:
- Expensive and complicated claims
- Extreme damage after a natural disaster such as a tornado or hurricane
- Claims where fault is contested
If you have a complex or expensive claim, it can be an excellent idea to consult with an attorney first before speaking with insurance adjusters. This ensures the protection of your legal rights and best interests.
Morgan & Morgan’s insurance litigation attorneys do not charge any upfront attorney’s fees, so you have no financial risk when working with us. We only get paid if you win and recover damages. In some cases, the insurance company has to pay your attorney’s fees if you win. Either way, you do not have to worry about any out-of-pocket fees if we handle your case. First consultations offering you invaluable advice are always free.
We Can Fight for a Fair Insurance Settlement
You do not have to handle the denial or underpayment of a claim on your own. We know the tricks of insurance companies and have experience with fighting unfair claim denials. Morgan & Morgan’s experienced insurance litigation lawyers deal with most types of insurance disputes, including bad faith litigation, breach of contract, and coverage disputes.
We have helped countless clients recover their due from an insurance company and could help you too. If your claim was unreasonably denied, delayed, or undervalued, our insurance disputes lawyers in Alpharetta, GA, are eager to help. Call us now at (877) 794-4256 or fill in our online form for a free, no-obligation review of your insurance dispute case.