What to do if homeowners insurance company is stalling? When you buy homeowners insurance, you expect your insurer to meet its obligations. You firmly believe that your insurance company will help you through difficult times and provide peace of mind in the event of natural disasters, accidents, and other incidents.
Homeowners’ insurance companies must act in good faith, but many violate that duty by delaying the claim process, a practice known as “deadlock.”
If your insurance company does not process your homeowner’s insurance claim within a reasonable time, you may have legal grounds for making a bad faith insurance claim.
Signs That Your Insurer Is Stalling Your Claim
If you don’t deal with insurance companies every day, it can be difficult to recognize their tendencies when trying to stop your claim, and as the person who needs the repair money, it can be all too easy to just accept what they give you as soon as possible. Don’t be fooled by their tricks, read this list so you can spot the signs of stalling when they occur.
- The insurer requests the documents one by one instead of all at once.
- They immediately deny a fully valid claim.
- You don’t have to constantly ask for more paperwork and documentation.
- Multiple statements that the company has not yet decided on its case.
- Request unrelated or intrusive medical records.
- Constantly request additional statements from service providers regarding your medical treatment or property damage claim.
- Tell you about the laws surrounding your case and how it is being mishandled or lying about these laws as a whole.
- Insurance experts dodge your calls or don’t respond to your attempts to contact them.
Switch insurers several times on your claim in the hope that the adjusters will miss out and pay less on your settlement.
Why your insurer is stalling your claim?
You probably don’t know why your insurance company is delaying your claim, but there are many reasons why companies do this and it is usually so that they can pay their policyholders less money. Some of the most common reasons insurance companies file claims include:
- Decline all claims upfront so that some claimants simply give up and don’t seek a real settlement from the insurer, forcing them to pay out of pocket for legitimate claims covered by their policy.
- Postpone the claim for as long as you can, eventually falling out or having to wait long enough to settle for a lower payment because they know you need the money right away to get your life back on track.
- Sometimes regulators just aren’t smart. We’ve seen this happen more than once when a claims adjuster didn’t understand the customer’s needs or even the laws that applied to their case.
- Waiting for a long time can sometimes help insurance companies, as the evidence can be lost or diminished over time. Some examples include witnesses who cannot remember the accident, claimants who lose documentation, evidence, or photos of the accidents, further property damage after the original claim that can be claimed as sabotage of the current claim, and many more reasons why the time to the benefit of the insurance company.
- If sufficient time elapses from the date of the incident, the company may be entitled not to pay your claim at all. This is where the statute of limitations comes in and it can sometimes help or hurt you. Most insurance policies allow you to claim for one year from the date of the incident, but the statute of limitations may dictate otherwise depending on the nature of your claim and its status.
How Long Does An Insurance Company Have To Settle A Homeowners Claim?
Some states have excellent laws on the books to protect insurance company customers. Once you notify your insurance company of a claim, they must promptly evaluate the claim and payout what you, as the insured, reasonably owe you. The standard for when a company acts in bad faith, or unreasonably delays or denies benefits, is not black and white but depends on the circumstances of each claim. These variables include the nature of the accident, the amount of damage, whether an injured person had a pre-existing condition, and even the amount of insurance coverage available.
If you feel that your insurance company is treating you unfairly when assessing your claim, by either paying out less than you think they owe, taking too long to make an offer or even refusing payment in full, please contact an experienced insurance lawyer.
Common types of claims Insurers are at a standstill
Unfortunately, insurance companies are notorious for failing to make claims, regardless of the type of problem they face. We’ve seen this a lot from accident victims to homeowners and more, but it’s as common as ever for insurance companies and probably always will be when they’re trying to protect their profits. Below are some of the most common types of claims we see insurance companies get stuck in.
- Homeowner Insurance Claims
- Insurance Claims from Commercial Property Owners
- Claims for car, truck, and motorcycle accidents
- Hail and storm damage claims
- Personal Injury Claims
What To Do If Homeowners Insurance Company Is Stalling?
If you suspect your homeowner’s insurance company is intentionally delaying processing or paying out your claim, take the following steps:
- Collect and organize your documentation and records related to your claim. It is important to collect the following types of evidence and documentation: photos and videos of the property damage, your medical records, repair estimates, a copy of your insurance policy, your correspondence with the insurance company, and much more. Keep this administration in a safe place and make sure that the documents are organized.
- Have a clear timeline of events. You should keep a journal where you record everything that happened during and after the natural disaster or incident that resulted in damage to or destruction of your property. It is essential to recall any conversation with the adjuster and write a summary of what the conversations were about. Memories can fade over time. Therefore, having a clear timeline of events can help you strengthen your claim against the insurer.
- Work with your homeowner’s insurance company. Most homeowners’ insurance policies contain a clause that requires policyholders to cooperate with the insurance company when filing a claim. If your insurer asks for additional documentation, you must provide it immediately. However, if your insurer asks you to make a recorded statement, it is highly recommended that you consult an attorney before making any statements.
Conclusion – What To Do If Homeowners Insurance Company Is Stalling
What to do if homeowners insurance company is stalling? If your homeowner’s insurance company gets stuck or uses delaying tactics to avoid paying your claim, contact an experienced attorney to defend your rights and help you get the compensation you deserve.