If you are like most people, you expect insurance benefits to cover your losses following a car accident. The unfortunate reality is that auto insurance providers deny claims all the time. Whether you are seeking coverage from your own carrier or filing a liability claim on the other driver’s policy, a denial letter can be devastating.
However, a denial letter is not the last word. If the other driver’s insurance carrier refuses to honor your claim, you retain the right to pursue legal action with the help of dedicated car accident attorneys.
Denials from your own carrier
If you were responsible for the accident or the only person involved in the crash, you might have to pursue benefits through your own comprehensive auto insurance policy. This type of coverage is “no-fault,” meaning you are entitled to file a claim no matter who caused the accident. Despite this designation, several factors could lead the insurance company to deny your claim. Some examples include:
- Expired policies. If your policy has expired, the insurance company has no obligation to honor your claim. Sometimes the insurance company can erroneously claim your policy has lapsed even though you have paid your premiums.
- Policy limits. If you reach your policy limits, you could face a hard limit on the available benefits.
- Unlawful activity. Most policies will allow the insurer to refuse to pay out benefits if you were breaking the law at the time of your accident. One common example is driving with an expired license.
- Failure to assist. Under your insurance policy, you have an obligation to report an accident to your carrier right away and assist them in their investigation. If you do not assist in these efforts or fail to immediately report your accident, your claim could be denied.
Reasons for a denial from the other insurance company
If the other driver’s policy lapsed or if they refuse to assist with the investigation, the insurer could deny your claim for lack of coverage. Often, a response from your lawyer could put the insurance company on notice– that you intend to hold them accountable for their driver’s negligence. Many claims are also denied on liability issues. These policies are fault-based, meaning they will only cover your damages if the insured driver was responsible for the crash. These denials do not mean you are out of luck. However, they do likely signal that you will need to pursue legal action to obtain the compensation you deserve.
Pursuing legal action
In many cases, the insurance company on the opposing side will defend their driver in court. If your claim is strong, the other side could suddenly be interested in settling your case. By working with a car accident lawyer for Rockland and Bergen counties, you increase the chances that you will receive the benefits you deserve.
Contact us today for a free consultation
Before you consider filing an insurance claim, talk to an attorney first. Your legal counsel can assist you in the claims process and potentially speed up your financial recovery. To get started, contact us at Kantrowitz, Goldhamer & Graifman P.C. for a free consultation.