Insurance Law

Insurance law involves a variety of issues, including coverage disputes, insurance fraud, and settling personal injury cases. These can involve disputes between insurance companies or between the insurer and the policyholder.

Anywhere there is the insurance industry, there are insurance laws. Insurance laws can be different in different states. If you have legal questions about your insurance coverage, talk to an insurance lawyer for legal advice.

Types of Insurance Law Disputes

Most Americans have some form of insurance. Most states require auto insurance coverage in order to drive. Many workers have health care insurance through their employer or from state health care exchanges. If you own or rent your house, you may also have property insurance coverage. Common types of insurance law issues involve:

  • Automobile insurance
  • Health insurance
  • Homeowners’ insurance
  • Life insurance
  • Medical malpractice insurance
  • Business interruption insurance
  • Workers’ compensation insurance

Insurance Industry Regulations

State and federal government agencies regulate the insurance industry. State agencies are directly responsible for regulating most insurance companies under state laws. This includes regulating insurance policy rates and investigating insurance violations. Under federal law, the Federal Insurance Office monitors the insurance sector to protect consumers.

Insurance Coverage Disputes

Many insurance law issues involve disputes over coverage. You may believe your damage claim is covered by your insurance policy. However, the insurance company may try to dismiss the claim if it falls within an exception. For example, many property insurance policies do not cover water damage from storms or natural disasters.

If you have an insurance dispute over coverage, you can try to file an appeal. If they still won’t payout for a covered claim, you can contact a lawyer for help negotiating a settlement or taking your case to court.

Insurance Fraud

Insurance companies won’t cover claims involving insurance fraud. This can include filing false claims, making omissions in your claim, or overstating your losses. Insurance companies take insurance fraud very seriously. They will investigate suspicious claims and deny potential fraud claims. The insurance provider may also refer the case to police for criminal charges.

A simple mistake on the claim forms can easily trigger a fraud investigation. If the insurance company accuses you of fraud, an insurance lawyer can help.

Insurance Bad Faith

There is an implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing in every insurance contract. You pay premiums in exchange for the insurance company covering valid insurance claims. The insurance company cannot wrongfully deny an insurance claim. State regulations control how insurance companies are to respond to claims for losses. 

When an insurance company violates these laws, it may have done so in bad faith. If they deny a covered claim, you can file a bad faith lawsuit against the insurer. Bad faith claims may involve wrongful denials of claims, unreasonable demands, or taking too long to respond to a claim.

Insurance Company Complaints

If you have a complaint about your insurance adjuster, you should first try to resolve it with your insurance company. If dealing informally doesn’t work, you can file a complaint with the state insurance regulator.

After you file a complaint, the insurance company has a deadline for responding. State agencies do not represent policyholders in legal actions against the insurance companies. However, their investigations can help insurance attorneys in preparing lawsuits. If the agency determines there are no violations, it will notify you with an explanation.

Insurance Policy Coverage Under State Law

Most states have minimum liability limits for auto insurance coverage. Drivers have to carry at least that level of coverage to be able to drive. This generally includes personal injury and property damage liability. Some states may also require uninsured driver coverage, while others make it optional. Some states have no-fault liability laws for car accidents. This means injury victims recover compensation from their own insurance company.

State law generally doesn’t require homeowners to have insurance. However, most mortgage lenders will require real estate insurance coverage. State laws can also affect which kinds of property damage coverage are allowed or required. If you have a government-backed mortgage, they may require flood insurance in flood zones.

Get an Insurance Lawyer’s Help

Insurance law practice depends on state and local laws. For questions about your insurance policies, talk to a local insurance lawyer for legal advice. Insurance lawyers understand the industry and the intricacies of policies. They can help you understand what your policy does and does not cover and protect your rights as a policyholder.

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