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Fresno Bad Faith Insurance

CONTACT A FRESNO BAD FAITH INSURANCE LAWYER TODAY (559) 840-3240

WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO ACT IN “BAD FAITH”?

Insurance bad faith is a legal term that describes the actions of insurance companies when handling claims. As a result, policyholders may have claims against their insurance company for its bad acts. The law holds insurance companies certain standards because of their position of power.  Consequently, under California Law, insurance companies owe a duty of good faith and fair dealing to their policyholders.

 

Most noteworthy, is often referred to as the “implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing” which exists in all insurance contracts.   When insurance companies break this covenant, the insured person (or “policyholder”) may have a legal claims against their insurer.

 

Contact us for a free consultation to discuss your case with our Fresno Bad Faith Insurance Lawyers.  Call us at (559) 840-3240 or toll free (844) FRESNO1.

DO I HAVE A BAD FAITH CLAIM AGAINST MY INSURANCE COMPANY?

Insurance bad faith is a legal term that describes the actions of insurance companies when handling claims. As a result, policyholders may have claims against their insurance company for its bad acts. The law holds insurance companies certain standards because of their position of power.  Consequently, under California Law, insurance companies owe a duty of good faith and fair dealing to their policyholders.

 

Most noteworthy, is often referred to as the “implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing” which exists in all insurance contracts.   When insurance companies break this covenant, the insured person (or “policyholder”) may have a legal claims against their insurer.

 

Contact us for a free consultation to discuss your case with our Fresno Bad Faith Insurance Lawyers.  Call us at (559) 840-3240 or toll free (844) FRESNO1.

CONTACT OUR FRESNO BAD FAITH INSURANCE LAW FIRM

As a result, a Fresno Bad Faith Insurance Lawyer will help you determine whether the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing is being properly honored by your insurance company.  Call a Fresno Bad Faith Insurance Lawyer today to discuss the details of your case (559) 840-3240 or toll free (844) FRESNO1.

Trauma Related Complex Regional Pain Syndrome, Fresno CRPS Lawyers, Fresno Personal Injury Lawyers
Trauma Related Complex Regional Pain Syndrome, Fresno CRPS Lawyers, Fresno Personal Injury Lawyers

VARIOUS TYPES OF BAD FAITH ACTS BY INSURANCE COMPANIES

Insurance companies owe many duties to their policyholders, of the most importance is acting in good faith. Other applicable duties vary depending upon whether the claim is a “first party” or “third party” claim.

 

A common first party claim is when an insurance company writes insurance on property that becomes damaged, like a home or vehicle. In that case, the insurer must investigate the damage and determine whether the damage will be covered. If so, they must pay proper value for the damaged property.

 

A Fresno Bad Faith Insurance Lawyer can provide you with a list of the rights you have and duties owed to you by your insurance company.

“The insurance business is about promises and trust. It is about delivering to the customer in times of need and if this cannot be imbibed in a professional neither him nor the industry will succeed.” - Tapan Singhel.....

WHAT IS ``FIRST PARTY`` BAD FAITH?

First and foremost, an act of First Party Bad Faith is one that is committed by your own insurance company relating to a claim involving you.

 

You pay your insurance company premiums each month for the insurance to be there when you need it.  Consequently, your insurance company owes many duties to you to act in good faith and deal fairly when handling your claims.

 

Bad faith in the first-party contexts often involves an insurance carrier’s improper investigation and valuation of the damaged property. Bad faith also arises in the context of first-party coverage for personal injury such as health insurance, life insurance or uninsured/underinsured motorist claims.

 

Our Fresno Bad Faith Insurance Lawyers can advise you in a free consultation whether your rights have been violated.  Finally, we can also advise you whether your first party rights are being violated.  Call today for a free in person meeting (559) 840-3240 or toll free at (844) FRESNO1.  Many times, knowing your rights is enough and legal action is not necessary if your insurance company knows YOU know your rights.

DUTY TO SETTLE CLAIMS WITHIN POLICY LIMITS

In California, third-party coverage carries the duty to settle a reasonably clear claim against the policyholder within policy limits.  As a result, your insurance company must avoid the risk of the policyholder being hit with a judgment in excess of your policy limits.  If this occurs, your insurance company may have mistakenly failed to settle your claim when it should have.

 

The best example of this conduct is when you cause a car accident and a claim is filed by the injured party.  The injured party makes a demand for your policy limits and your insurance company refuses to pay your policy limits. If the claim clearly merits policy limits your insurance company must pay.

DUTY TO DEFEND YOU IN A LAWSUIT

Another way insurers breach their duties is by failing to defend or settle. As a result, it may be liable for the entire amount of any judgment obtained by a plaintiff against the policyholder.  Hence, this includes a judgment exceeding policy limits.  As a result of these precise actions of an insurance company, this was the holding of the landmark case of Comunale.

 

Also, notable, in California, a policyholder may be able to recover attorneys’ fees separately and in addition to the judgment for damages against a defendant insurer.  The exists to the extent that those fees were incurred in recovering tort damages (for breach of the implied covenant) as opposed to contractual damages for breach of the terms of the insurance policy.

 

The allocation of attorneys’ fees between those two categories is usually a question of fact (meaning it usually goes to the jury).

ASSIGNMENT OR DIRECT ACTION?

ASSIGNMENT

Assignment is a situation is where an insured is abandoned in bad faith by the insurance company. In this instance, the insured may make a special settlement agreement with the plaintiff. Sometimes this occurs after trial, where the insured has attempted to defend himself or herself by paying for a lawyer out of pocket, but went to verdict and lost (the actual situation in the landmark Comunale case).

 

Other times, it occurs before trial and the parties agree to put on an uncontested trial that results in a final verdict and judgment against the insured.  The plaintiff agrees to not actually execute on the final judgment against the insured in exchange for the assignment of rights from the insured against his insurance company to the Plaintiff.

DIRECT ACTION

The second situation is where the plaintiff does not need to obtain a judgment first.  Instead, he proceeds directly against the insured’s insurer under a state statute authorizing such a “direct action.”

IF YOU ARE SUFFERING FROM COMPLEX REGIONAL PAIN SYNDROME AFTER A TRAUMATIC ACCIDENT OR EVENT, CONTACT US TODAY IF YOU ARE CONSIDERING CONSULTING WITH A FRESNO “CRPS” LAWYER (559) 840-3240 or (844) FRESNO1 toll free.

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