What is Insurance Bad Faith in Arizona?
When an insurance claim is not properly paid, there is often a question of whether such failure to pay a claim is appropriate based upon a legitimate issue or interpretation of the insurance policy, or whether such nonpayment constitutes bad faith. The following provides an explanation of the types of conduct that may be deemed to be bad faith in Arizona.
Failure to Give Due Consideration to the Interests of the Insured
In Arizona, insurance companies are required to give at least the same consideration to the interests of the insured as they do to their own interests. This means that if there is uncertainty regarding a provision in the contract of insurance or the application based upon the facts and circumstances of the claim, the insurance company cannot automatically decide to favor its own interests against the interests of the insured.
Patterns of Claim Denial
When an insurance claim is made in Arizona, the insurance company is required to promptly evaluate the claim and to make a decision as to whether the claim is valid and covered under the policy of insurance. If the claim is valid, the insurance company must promptly make payment.
In some cases, insurance companies have instituted procedures designed to unreasonably stall the claims investigation process, such as automatically denying all claims at the outset or to engage in conduct in which claims are not handled in an unbiased and expeditious manner. When an insurance company implements procedures that are not designed to give a fair and prompt evaluation of claims, such pattern of conduct may constitute insurance bad faith in Arizona.
Patterns of Claim Delay
Another tactic that may constitute insurance bad faith in Arizona is a pattern of claims delay. For instance, when a claim is made, an insurance company may need additional information from the insured in order to process the claim. When the insurance company knows what additional information it needs, it should promptly request all such information from the insured at one time. If instead the insurance company needs information but only requests one piece of information at a time in order to prolong the claims administration process, this may constitute insurance bad faith.
Failure to Investigate to Determine the Amount Owed
When a payment must be made on a claim, insurance companies must have an objective basis for determining fair payment. As an example, when a vehicle is totaled in a car accident, the insurance company must determine the fair market value of the car at the time it was totaled based upon objective information, such as the selling price of comparable cars in the market. If the insurance company fails to make such investigation and instead only offers a token amount for the vehicle significantly below the fair market value, this may be a case of insurance bad faith.
This Firm Takes Claims of Insurance Bad Faith Seriously
In addition to being an Arizona attorney, I am also a licensed Property & Casualty Insurance Adjuster in the State of Arizona. With this training, I am well aware of exactly how a claim should be processed, and what legally should or should not be done in the claims administration process. I know the course of action that claims adjusters and insurance companies should take, and when they deviate from the accepted process so that they can avoid payouts and increase their profits. I will seek to hold them fully accountable for their conduct, on behalf of my clients.
Please Call Me to Learn About Whether You Have a Valid Claim for Insurance Bad Faith in Arizona
Once I learn about the facts and circumstances of your case, I can advise you as to whether I feel that you have a strong case of insurance bad faith. Please call me to schedule a free, no obligation consultation. If I and my firm are retained, we will work tirelessly in seeking to hold the insurance company fully accountable for the full measure of damages for their wrongful conduct.
There is no fee for us unless you recover.