Being involved in an accident is frustrating enough. However, you suck it up and do what needs to be done. You make sure you’re treated for your injuries. You get the repairs done on your car. You go back to work if you’re able. You file your insurance claim with the other driver’s insurance company. So, what happens when you get a letter in the mail saying your car insurance claim has been denied? You are sure to be angry. You will call and probably get the voicemail of the adjuster handling your claim. You may even get him on the phone. Chances are, however, nothing is going to change.
If your insurance claim is denied, you really want to consult with a car accident lawyer. Insurance companies are not in the business of paying claims. They wouldn’t be able to survive if they did. They often deny claims submitted by other drivers. They know that many people won’t appeal or fight the denial. They are hoping you are one of these people.
Reasons Why a Car Insurer Denies Your Claim
If your accident was not your fault, you should file a claim against the other driver’s insurance company. In a perfect world, your claim would be paid in a timely fashion. You would move on with your life. Sadly, we don’t live in a perfect world.
You may get a denial letter from the other driver’s insurance company. There are several reasons they may cite for denying your claim:
- The policy was canceled or it lapsed
- The driver was not insured under the policy
- The insurer believes the accident was your fault
- The insurer doesn’t believe you were really hurt
- The insurer doesn’t think the accident is what caused your injuries
If the claim is denied for the first two reasons, you may have a problem. If the policy was not valid, you will likely have to pursue the other driver personally. If it is denied for any of the other reasons, a good car accident attorney can fight on your behalf.
Can a Falls Church Car Accident Lawyer Help if the Other Driver Isn’t Insured?
If the other driver wasn’t insured, you are going to have to file a claim under your uninsured motorist’s coverage. The driver may have simply had no insurance. Alternatively, their policy may have been canceled or it lapsed.
If this happens, you should have uninsured motorists’ coverage under your own insurance policy. If so, there is good news and bad news. The good news is you will have a chance to receive some money for your injuries. The bad news is that most uninsured motorists’ coverage is limited to a few thousand dollars.
Let your Falls Church accident lawyer contact the insurance company on your behalf. They can negotiate to try to get you as much compensation as possible.
What to Do When the Other Driver’s Car Insurance Company Doesn’t Pay
Hopefully, you’re not dealing with an uninsured motorist issue. If the other driver’s insurance company denied your claim for just cause, you can appeal the claim. You may be denied several times before they pay your claim. It is wise to have an attorney handle this for you.
Your car accident attorney has experience dealing with insurance companies. They may even have contact information for reliable people within the insurance company. They probably have an idea of how much the insurance company is willing to offer based on past experience. This is information you simply don’t have.
The insurance companies have lawyers working for them. If the adjuster can’t settle the issue easily, the matter may go to court. You can bet the insurance company is going to have an attorney handle this for them.
The goal of the insurance company is to settle the claim. They do not want to go to trial. Nobody ever really wants to go to trial. It is time-consuming and expensive. Your lawyer will hopefully be able to work out a fair settlement with the insurance company.
Contact a Virginia Car Accident Lawyer
If you have been hurt in a car accident, you should file a claim against the other driver’s insurance company. If they deny your claim, you need to contact an experienced Virginia car accident lawyer right away. You have two years to file a lawsuit in the state of Virginia. You don’t have that kind of time to address your insurance claim.
Typically, the insurance company will state how long you have to appeal your claim. It should be included in the denial letter. It’s usually just a few days. It may say ten or fourteen days. Either way, it’s not a whole lot of time.
As soon as you get your denial letter, you need to contact a Falls Church car accident lawyer. You want to address it right away. The longer you wait, the harder it is to get your claim paid. If you get the denial in your attorney’s hands right away, they can work to settle your claim.
Your initial consultation with your lawyer is free. It gives you a chance to ask any questions you may have. The lawyer will give you an idea of how strong a case you have. They can even give you an idea of what your case may be worth.
Make sure you bring the following with you on your first visit to your lawyer’s office:
- Accident or police report
- Contact info for the other driver’s insurance company
- Copy of the denial letter
- Medical documentation
- Names and contact information for any eyewitnesses
- Pictures of the accident scene
- Pictures of your injuries
Your attorney can use this information to try to negotiate a settlement of your claim. Make sure you are very honest and upfront with your attorney from the beginning. You want to give him all the information he may need to advocate for you. Your attorney will work hard to get you the compensation you deserve.