Wednesday, July 13, 2011

When to Sue Your Insurance Company

We always advise our clients to work through the claims process and obtain as much money possible on your own before having an attorney review your file for a potential lawsuit. Your insurance company will make an initial offer which is negotiable. If you feel the offer is unfair, you have every right to challenge it.

Once you believe you have gone as far as you can go yet you still believe you are being unfairly compensated, then seek legal advice. In my experiences we can usually tell a client after an initial meeting if we believe we can obtain more money on their behalf. In almost all of our lawsuits, we've been able to obtain significantly more money than the insurance company's "last, best offer" to the client.

You can expect to pay a contingent fee in the 40% range in a lawsuit against your insurance company. You will also be responsible for costs including expert fees out of whatever result might be obtained on your behalf. Understand that it is not a quick process but, litigation can be a productive, though last resort to obtain what you are owed.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Record Time For Denials

People in Sierra Vista are already being told what's not covered before even seeing an adjuster! This may be a new speed record, even in Arizona. Do not take "no" without challenging any denial or refusal to pay. The fires were bad, the next few months may be worse!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Red Flag Issues: Ongoing Wildfire Claim Issues

Our office has already been contacted by potential clients in the Sierra Vista fire losses. Some individuals are being told by claims adjusters their insurance policies were apparently "reformed" recently without their knowledge. Also, people are being told they need specific proof of ownership of their contents even though any such proof was destroyed in the fires.

These are huge "red flag" issues for anyone at the beginning stages of an insurance claim. An insurance policy is a contract. It cannot be changed without consent by both parties. If your insurance carrier tells you differently, get professional legal help!

Likewise, you can swear to the ownership of items destroyed in the fires without having specific "proof of ownership" such as receipts etc... Insurance carriers routinely intimidate customers out of millions of dollars in claims payments through misrepresentation and intimidation tactics. Don't be a victim! If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to call our offices at 520-882-9115.