Car Accident Insurance Claims & Coverages
30 Years of Helping People Involved in Car Accidents
Insurance companies are in the business of protecting their customers from financial calamity should they be involved in a car accident that causes serious personal injury and/or major property damage. Particularly after a car crash, it can be very difficult to deal with the insurance carrier and get a fair resolution of your claim even when it is your own insurance carrier and you have been a reliable customer for many years.
At times like these, it may be necessary for you to hire an attorney to help you with your insurance claim. Alan Sackrin, a Broward County accident attorney, has dealt with insurance companies doing the following bad faith acts:
1. Lowball Settlement Offers
When there has been an accident or crash, and the result is that a vehicle – the family car or minivan, the SUV or sedan or pickup truck – has been totaled, then the policy should help replace that needed family vehicle. Nevertheless, automobile insurance carriers are known to try and lowball offers on cars that have been destroyed in crashes as well as doing manipulative tactics like holding onto the money and delaying the payment to increase pressure on the insured to take whatever is being offered to them.
2. Denied Coverage When the Policy Does Cover the Crash
In car accident lawsuits, there are times when the insurance company denies that its policy language covers the accident at all, which is the rationale they use for not paying the claim. Other times, the insurance company will be made a reasonable settlement demand and it refuses to accept that offer because of their stance that the policy doesn’t provide coverage in the situation. Wrongful denial is a basis for pursuing claims against the insurance company for acting in “bad faith,” as is denying coverage when the policy language provides for coverage.
Accident Insurance Claims: Cars | Motorcycles | Bicycles | Trucks | Vans | SUVs
Insurance companies in Florida, as well as the rest of the United States, are created to make a profit; their efforts are focused upon their bottom line, and keeping the amount of monies paid each year in claims as low as possible. After all, in years where insurance carriers have been hit with large numbers of claims, such as a bad hurricane year, they can risk going out of business in their efforts to make good on paying out legitimate claims on insurance policies.
This causes insurance companies to train their agents and adjusters on how to deal with the large number of cliams they receive on a daily basis. Their goal is always to keep the company management and ultimately their company shareholders happy: which is in conflict with providing justice for you, the injury victim. Sometimes, they may even go over the line so far that they are guilty of insurance bad faith.
All too often after a serious accident or car crash, insurance company adjusters appear on the scene and are on the job, aggressively attempting to resolve claims quickly – particularly if there has been a tragic fatality. Fast settlements of serious injury accidents and wrongful death claims are seldom in the injury victim’s best interests.
Alan’s Tip: It is very important to have an experienced legal advocate on your side that understands how insurance company representatives negotiate claims. Insurance employees, no matter how friendly and nice, are not looking out for the injured person’s best interests: please be aware of this at all times (are you being recorded?). This is especially true after the 2012 PIP Reforms, where Insurance Company Fraud Specialists are allowed to put you under oath and interrogate you (and it’s up to you to get a lawyer to be present during questioning here).
Having an accident lawyer at your side, especially one with his years of experience dealing with insurance adjusters and savvy insurance defense attorneys, not only levels the playing field but it helps to lessen the stress levels of family members having to deal with the aftermath of a major accident or crash.
What Are The Different Types of Florida Car Insurance Coverage?: Law Reforms
Most car crashes involve dealing with an insurance company, including Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage. In Florida, as of July 2012, a new Florida law involving PIP insurance reforms became effective.
PIP Insurance in Florida – Reforms Passed After Widespread Car Accident Fraud
The Florida Legislature changed Florida car accident insurance laws because the state had become the place for a huge number of fraudulent, staged car accidents, where con men were faking car crashes in order to get money out of phony insurance claims. To stop this wrongdoing, the Florida PIP Insurance requirements were changed by Florida lawmakers and sent to Governor Rick Scott for his approval by May 5, 2012. To read Governor Scott’s news release dated May 4, 2012, explaining his reasons for the PIP Reforms, go here.
PIP Reforms in 2012 (HB119) mean that in the State of Florida:
- there is a fourteen (14) day deadline to get medical care and see a doctor after an accident;
- Only approved health care providers will be covered by PIP insurance;
- PIP-approved health care coverage is limited to an “emergency medical condition“;
- Some health care providers are no longer covered by PIP insurance coverage (e.g., acupuncturists).
- While claimants can be put under oath and questioned by a Fraud Specialist, PIP Reform does not provide that these claimants get a lawyer to protect their rights during this questioning into their medical care.
Medical Payments Related to Car Accidents: What is Med Pay?
In Florida, “Med Pay” is insurance coverage that is available to car accident injury victims who have purchase this kind of coverage; it is a no-fault insurance policy to cover 100% of any medical bills and some lost wages. Med Pay covers things not paid for by PIP insurance or health insurance policies. In a civil negligence lawsuit, any damage award you receive does not mean that you much reimburse the payments received under Med Pay policies.
What is Bodily Injury (BI) Accident Insurance?
Bodily Injury accident insurance policies provide coverage and sometimes a legal defense for the person who is responsible for the car accident. The person who caused the wreck will soon have his insurance carrier involved in any injury case, since his or her BI insurance coverage is the source of coverage in a personal injury lawsuit filed against them because of the crash that they caused to happen.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a crash or accident involving serious injury or death from a collision between vehicles including semis, big rigs, 18 wheelers, cars, sedans, pickup trucks, SUVs, minivans, motorcycles, bicycles, ATVs, Jet Skis, or other motor vehicles, please feel free to contact Alan for a free initial consultation. Alan Sackrin and his legal team are very experienced in representing crash accident victims and their families, and they’re ready to help.
Quick Florida Car Accident Facts:
According to the Florida Department of Motor Vehicles, for example, in 2009 statewide there were 20,085 alcohol related traffic accidents resulting in 1,004 deaths and 14,130 injuries. Additionally, damages from auto crashes total $150 billion annually because compensation for a car accident, in most cases, includes recovery of medical expenses, property damage, lost wages and lost earning potential, pain and suffering, disfigurement, loss of consortium and emotional distress. Learn more from Alan Sackrin, an expert car accident lawyer.
Want to Know More?
Since 1982, Alan Sackrin has represented clients throughout Florida in recovering monetary damages for car accident injuries. Alan is a Board Certified Civil Trial Expert that strives to maximize the amount of compensation his clients’ receive for their claim. Alan brings a high-level of skill and knowledge to his client’s car accident cases and he offers a free initial consultation.
See: Sample Case Verdicts and Settlements
Related Car Accident Topics
- 8 important steps you should take at the time of an accident
- Car Accident FAQ
- Car Accident Insurance Claims and Coverage (PIP and Bodily Injury Coverage)
- Car Accident Damages
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