Like most of your neighbors, you regularly drive to work and other places without incident. With about 14 motor vehicle accidents happening every hour in the Keystone State, though, you may eventually find yourself in the middle of a serious one.
If you sustain a life-altering injury in a collision, you can expect the insurance company to process and pay your claim quickly. After all, insurance providers have a duty to act in good faith. If an insurer breaches this duty, a lawyer may help you fight for what you deserve.
What is insurance bad faith?
With few exceptions, insurance companies make money by collecting premiums and paying as little as possible in claims. Still, insurers owe many duties to policyholders, including an obligation to deal fairly with them.
Among other legal requirements, this duty requires promptly investigating and paying claims. If an insurance representative drags his or her feet or otherwise slows payment, you may have a valid insurance bad faith claim. The same is true if the insurer does not have a valid reason for denying your claim.
How can an attorney help?
Attorneys have a variety of ways to force insurers to act in good faith. First, a lawyer may communicate with the insurer to better understand a delay or denial. He or she may also evaluate the matter and tell you whether you have a potentially valid tort claim.
If you do, an attorney can likely help you through all aspects of the case, including representing you during settlement negotiations or at trial. Pennsylvania’s insurance bad faith statute may even allow you to recover legal fees and punitive damages.