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Car Insurance Claims Disputes Lawyers
Dealing with the aftermath of a car accident can challenge the perseverance of the most determined individual. Some car accidents cause serious injuries that take months, if not years to heal. Even if you sustained relatively minor injuries, the cost of medical bills quickly reaches a point that negatively impacts your finances. Recovering from one or more car accident injuries can keep you out of work for a significant period, which deals another blow to your financial status. Then, there is the issue of paying for the damage done to your vehicle and other possessions.
With all the headaches that are associated with an auto collision, the last thing you want to happen is having to interact with an uncooperative insurance company. After all, since you pay monthly premiums to receive coverage, you expect your insurance company to approve a valid claim. Unfortunately, some insurers deny claims for invalid reasons or they take more time than they should to issue an insurance claim decision.
As a resident of Jackson, Mississippi, you have witnessed the city grow quickly from a southern state capital to a commerce hub that connects with thriving commercial centers such as Dallas, Birmingham, and New Orleans. The robust growth experienced by Jackson correlates with robust growth in the number of auto crashes. Busy intersections near downtown Jackson, such as High Street and North Jefferson Street, are sites that experience more car accidents than other parts of the city and surrounding suburbs.
If you were involved in an auto accident in Jackson, you should reach out to one of the experienced car accident attorneys at Morgan & Morgan. Since 1988, we have helped clients recover more than $14 billion in monetary damages from personal injury cases like car accidents. Our team of car accident lawyers helps you file a persuasive insurance claim, as well as monitor it to ensure you receive an insurance claim decision in a timely manner. We also assist clients by filing an appeal for a denied insurance claim.
Schedule a free case evaluation with a personal injury attorney at Morgan & Morgan to strengthen your auto insurance claim.
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Do Insurers Have to Meet a Deadline for Making an Insurance Claim Decision?
Yes, car insurance companies must issue an insurance claim decision before the deadline arrives for notifying policyholders. If you sustain injuries that are associated with an auto collision, you take a huge financial hit by paying off medical bills. With your bank account depleting rapidly, you might not have the income to keep up with medical bill payments because your injuries have forced you out of work. This means you need your insurance company to issue an insurance claim decision promptly.
Insurance companies licensed to operate in Mississippi must acknowledge receiving a claim within 15 days after receiving it. The postmark on the envelope verifies the date when an insurer received a claim. After receiving a claim, a Mississippi car insurance company has to make an insurance claim decision within a “reasonable time.” If your insurer approves your car insurance claim, the company has between 25 and 35 days to send you the check that covers your financial losses.
One of the benefits of hiring a Mississippi-licensed personal injury attorney is to monitor the progress of your claim.
What Do I Need to Know About a Denial Letter?
Another benefit of working with one of the car accident lawyers at Morgan & Morgan is to learn about the entire claim appeal process. One of the most important documents sent to you by your insurance company is called the claim denial letter. If your insurer denies your claim for compensation, the company must send you a letter describing in detail why the insurance adjuster made the decision to deny your car insurance claim. You should read the entire claim denial letter to understand the reasons why your insurer denied your request for compensation.
Your insurance company has two options when it comes to denying your auto insurance claim. The insurer might issue a “complete denial,” which means the company does not send you any money to cover your financial losses. For example, if you totaled a car worth $40,000 and your insurer sends you a complete denial letter, you do not receive any money to pay for the price of a new automobile. The second option is called a partial denial letter, which means your insurance company covers some of your financial losses.
If you do not agree with the decision to deny your claim, you have the right to file an appeal that seeks compensation.
Why Do Auto Insurance Companies Deny Claims?
Insurance companies establish an appeal process that is managed by an adjuster who conducts a thorough investigation. If your claim came back denied, your insurer has several possible reasons for making its insurance claim decision.
Bad Faith Denial
When an insurance company denies a car insurance claim in bad faith, it means the company either ignored persuasive evidence or overlooked evidence that helps boost the strength of your claim. Ignoring the evidence submitted with your insurance claim represents an intentional act of bad faith, while overlooking evidence is typically considered an unintentional act of bad faith. Your car accident attorney determines whether your insurer made an insurance claim decision in bad faith.
Driver Not Covered
For a driver to be covered by your auto insurance policy, you must list the driver in the policy. This means allowing someone not listed in your car insurance policy to operate your vehicle can come back to haunt you. If you have a teenager inching close to the legal driving age, you should add the teen to your car insurance policy.
Limits on Coverage
Your insurance policy includes coverage limits for different types of accident scenarios. For example, your car insurance policy might have a limit of paying for property damage that is worth $25,000. If repairing the damage done to your vehicle is valued at $40,000, your insurer has to cover just the first $25,000 of the damage. You do not receive a complete denial letter, but instead, your insurer issues a partial denial insurance claim decision.
Some policyholders forget to renew their auto insurance policies after they expire. Insurance companies do not have to notify policyholders about a pending expiration of coverage. If you failed to renew your car insurance policy and you got involved in a vehicle collision, your insurance company will deny your claim for financial assistance. Another reason for expired coverage is when a policyholder does not stay current with monthly premium payments and the insurance company closes out the policy.
Unauthorized Business Trips
Car insurance companies want policyholders to include business trip coverage for a policy if the policyholder uses an insured car for business. The reason for informing your insurance company about driving your car for business reasons is the increased risk of getting involved in a car collision. Your risk drops significantly if you fly to a business trip destination and get around town by driving a rental car.
Collision With an Uninsured Motorist
Although Mississippi requires residents to purchase liability car insurance for their registered motor vehicles, the state does not require registered car owners to buy uninsured motorist coverage. You have the option to include uninsured motorist coverage and if you decide not to add the coverage, getting involved in a car accident with an uninsured motorist means you will not receive compensation.
How Do I Appeal a Denied Insurance Claim Decision?
The first step on the road to getting a denied insurance claim decision overturned is to hire a highly rated auto accident attorney. Your legal counsel can help you submit an appeal letter that describes why you feel your insurance company made the wrong decision. Before your lawyer sends the carefully drafted appeal letter, you can expect to receive several different types of legal support.
A Review of Your Policy
Reviewing your policy is important to avoid wasting your time by filing an appeal that has no chance of getting a denied insurance claim decision overturned. Your car accident lawyer determines whether your policy contains sufficient coverage to pay for property damage and the medical bills generated by diagnosing, treating, and rehabilitating any injuries. In addition to confirming coverage limits, your legal counsel ensures you have an active policy. Your insurer will deny your claim if you allowed your car insurance policy to expire or you failed to remain current with monthly premium payments.
Examine the Police Report
One of the crucial documents your auto collision attorney must examine is the official police report. After most car accidents, the appropriate law enforcement agency responds by investigating the cause of the crash. After completing the investigation, an officer from the law enforcement agency sends your personal injury lawyer a copy of the official police report.
The official police report should include photographs of the crash scene, which provide your attorney with physical evidence such as the damage done to your vehicle, as well as the tire tracks associated with each of the vehicles that were involved in the collision. Other evidence includes footage from security cameras and photos presenting the condition of the road at the time of the auto collision.
Conduct Interviews With Witnesses
After a car accident, one of the most important steps involves getting the names and contact information of each witness. You hand over the names and contact information of witnesses to your personal injury attorney who interviews each witness to build a strong enough case to file an appeal for a denied insurance claim decision. Because our memories fade over time, your lawyer wants to interview every witness as soon as possible after the vehicle crash. Witnesses support the physical evidence gathered at the scene by the law enforcement agency that responded to the collision.
Interact With the Insurance Adjuster
One of the many reasons why you should hire an experienced car accident attorney is because an experienced litigator develops positive professional relationships with insurance adjusters. Developing positive professional relationships with insurance adjusters prevents animosity from tainting your appeal for a denied insurance claim decision. Your legal counsel also interacts with an insurance adjuster to move your claim along in the processing system.
Filing the Appeal
Drafting a convincing appeal letter requires the expertise of an experienced personal injury attorney. Your lawyer submits additional evidence that boosts the strength of your case, as well as uses language that your insurance company understands. Working with a car accident attorney produces a professionally written appeal letter that does not allow emotion to get in the way of submitting overwhelmingly persuasive evidence.
What Should I Look for in a Car Accident Attorney?
We already have mentioned experience as an important factor when searching for legal representation. However, you want to work with a car accident attorney who has extensive experience filing successful appeals for denied insurance claims. Your legal counsel must be an effective communicator by responding promptly to emails, phone calls, and text messages. This is especially important when you expect an insurance claim decision from your insurer within a couple of days.
Another important factor concerns the reputation of a car accident attorney. You should read the online reviews left on sites such as Yelp and Google, as well as discover what a lawyer has earned as a reputation rating from the Better Business Bureau (BBB). Focus on reviews that describe how an attorney won an appeal to overturn a denied insurance claim decision.
Work With Morgan & Morgan to Win an Appeal
With a keen understanding of Mississippi car accident laws, the personal injury attorneys at Morgan & Morgan have earned the reputation of reversing unfavorable insurance claim decisions. If you got involved in an auto collision in Jackson, the ideal move is to hire a personal injury lawyer to help you file the original claim. Nonetheless, if your claim came back denied by your insurance company, act with a sense of urgency by scheduling a free case evaluation today with one of the car accident attorneys at Morgan & Morgan.