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from our blog


August 29, 2017

The Insurance Industry Quick-Hit Settlement

If you’ve been in a collision and it was someone else’s fault, odds are very good that you will hear from the at-fault driver’s insurance company as soon as possible. It’s a tactic that is happening more and more in Arizona. This is done for a variety of reasons: (1) the insurance company would like […]

 

Insurance Consumer Attorney – Arizona Residents Battle Bad Faith Insurance Companies

When was the last time you purchased an insurance policy? Did you get explanations that were fully comprehensible to you and not so much “insurance legalese”? Did you take time to carefully read through the printed policy terms before you signed and paid the premium? Did you feel free to negotiate with the insurance agent on a policy that really met your needs and the needs of your family? Did you get to bargain for the insurance policy language you preferred or did the insurance company offer you an insurance policy to either take or leave without any input from you on the insurance policy language? If not, you are not alone. Most individuals rely exclusively on their insurance agent’s verbal assertions, descriptions, and promises about what the policy will cover.

Did you know enough about the policy terms to allow you to comparison shop for a better deal with a different insurer? According to our insurance bad faith attorney, Arizona consumers seldom get detailed answers to their questions about policy coverage before they enter into the insurance contract. Arizonans typically fill-out the insurance application, dutifully pay the premium, and then place the written declaration of insurance away in a file or safe box. The only time the policyholder reviews the coverage is following an accident, property loss, emergency hospitalization, or some other incident. When the insurance consumer finally sits down to read the insurance policy, they will discover that it is not easily understood.

From an Insurance Bad Faith Attorney, AZ Consumers Should Always Seek an Independent Legal Opinion

Shane L. Harward knows that, as a practicing insurance attorney, Arizonans routinely purchase insurance without thoroughly investigating the coverage details presented in the policy.

The most important aspect of any insurance policy is what it will and will not cover. Most claims denials are based upon exclusions in the insurance policy. Exclusions usually appear on the last several pages of the insurance policy and attempt to take away the coverage that appears on the first couple pages of the insurance policy.  Many insurance consumers are unaware of these exclusions and frankly, the exclusions are usually difficult to understand even if the insurance consumer is aware of them.

Unfortunately, most policyholders don’t find out what is actually covered until they file a claim. After paying premiums for years, sometimes decades, when Arizona insurance consumers actually file bona fide insurance claims they may be notified by their insurers that the policies bought and paid for don’t cover their medical expenses or damages originally thought. When you don’t really understand your policy provisions, how will you know if your insurer wrongfully denies your claim? You need an independent legal opinion to determine if the claim denial was violates Arizona’s duty of good faith and fair dealing.

Compounding the problem, Arizona residents who lack a clear understanding of their insurance policy coverage are much more vulnerable to the wrongful denial of claims. Those consumers may not know how to challenge their insurance company’s bad faith refusal to pay insurance benefits. And in some cases, the insurance company will attempt to rescind, or cancel, the policyholder’s insurance altogether in a blatant refusal to cover medical expenses from illness, injury, or hospitalization. Insurance consumers often believe they have no rights to insurance proceeds when insurers, acting in bad faith, pull out all the stops to avoid paying on legitimate claims.

Although the insurance policy represents a contract between the insurer and the insured, insurance policies are what the law calls adhesion contracts because the policy language is not subject to bargaining by equally positioned parties. Insurance consumers are almost always in the weaker bargaining position and take what is offered. The insurance company is at a distinct bargaining advantage, and they know it. They are the insurance experts. They draft the insurance policies. They investigate the claims. They control the money. They decide how much to pay or not pay. If you suspect that your insurance company is acting in bad faith and breaching the terms of your insurance policy agreement, that’s when you need aggressive legal representation and advocacy.

Your Bad Faith Insurance Attorney in Arizona

Do you feel pressed or intimidated into accepting less than what you feel that your insurance company agreed to pay under the insurance policy? When your insurer has rejected your claim or minimized coverage for your losses, call Shane L. Harward – Insurance Bad Faith Attorney, Arizona – at 480.874.2918.  Don’t let the insurance company double-talk you out of the full value of your legitimate claim. When you suspect bad faith on the part of your insurer, contact the Law Offices of Shane L. Harward, PLC, today and protect your rights to full recovery.

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  • Shane Harward Law Offices of Shane L. Harward PLC

    10575 North 114th Street
    Suite 103
    Scottsdale, Arizona 85259

    Telephone 480-874-2918
    Facsimile 480-588-5063

    By Appointment Only:
    4809 East Thistle Landing Drive
    Suite 100
    Phoenix, Arizona 85044

    Telephone 602-384-4638

    Mailing Address:
    Post Office Box 12877
    Scottsdale, Arizona 85267