What Can You Do if Your Insurance Denies Your Claim After a Car Accident?
Georgia law requires you to have an active auto liability policy if you choose to drive on the state’s roads. This requirement exists to protect you and others from the costs of an auto accident.
This means that if you are at fault and cause an injury crash, your insurance company can pay the claims of those hurt in the crash up to your policy’s limits. Alternatively, if another driver hurts you, you can file a claim against that driver’s insurer.
You might also choose to file a claim against your insurance if fault is contested and the other driver’s insurance company is unwilling to pay your claim. But your insurance company may deny this claim and leave you without compensation. If this happens to you in Georgia, there are certain steps you can take.
Steps to Take if Your Insurance Won’t Pay Your Claim
Data does not show how often auto insurers deny claims, although health insurance companies are estimated to deny up to 20% of the claims presented to them. If your auto insurance company does deny your claim, they must do so in writing. Once you receive that letter, take the following steps:
Review the Reason for the Denial
First, the letter you receive notifying you of your claim’s denial should also include a reason for the denial. Review this reason and make sure you understand it.
Sometimes, your insurance company may simply need additional information or documentation to complete your claim. If so, submitting what is requested might be all that is needed for your claim to be approved.
In other cases, your insurance company will explain why they believe they do not need to pay your claim. If you do not understand the reason given or feel that the reason is unjustified, it’s important to seek guidance from an experienced car accident attorney, who can advise you of your best path going forward. One option is to appeal the denial.
Appeal the Denial
Every insurance company has an internal appeals process through which you can appeal the denial of your claim. You must typically submit your appeal within six months or less, but you will want to submit yours as soon as possible to ensure you don’t miss any crucial deadlines or steps.
Bring a Claim Against Your Insurer
If your appeal is unsuccessful, the next step would be to file a lawsuit against your insurer in court. In this suit, you would need to prove that you were entitled to coverage under the terms of your policy and that your insurance company wrongfully denied your claim.
Because lawsuits and trials can involve complicated substantive and procedural law matters, it is highly advisable to have an attorney help you at this stage.
Protecting Your Rights to Compensation
While it may seem intimidating to go against your insurance company, keep in mind that you have rights. This includes the right to receive the benefits you contracted for with your insurer. A knowledgeable and skilled Georgia car accident attorney can be a significant asset in your quest to secure the compensation you deserve.
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