Unfortunately, car accidents happen all the time. After a collision, injury victims in Maryland will look to the other party’s insurance provider to get compensation for their financial harm. However, the insurance company may partially or fully deny the victim’s claim.
Denials are issued on a number of grounds that might involve the accident, driver, injuries, or how quickly the claimant filed. If you believe that the insurance company was wrong to deny your claim, you can sue the other driver in court to recover damages.
In some cases, you may also sue the insurance company for denying your claim in bad faith.
Insurance companies take advantage of claimants who don’t have legal representation. That ends today when you enlist the help of the experienced Maryland car accident attorneys at Rice, Murtha & Psoras. Call our offices today at (410) 694-7291 for a free initial case assessment.
Maryland Fault Rules for Car Accident Insurance Claims
Car accident victims who file insurance claims with the other driver’s insurance provider must be able to show that the other driver caused the accident. This is because the State of Maryland is a “fault” state, unlike many other “no-fault” states that allow claims without proof of fault.
To determine the actual cause of the accident, insurance companies will typically conduct their own investigation into the accident. In the course of this investigation, the insurance company’s representatives (known as “claims adjusters”) may seek out the official police accident report and statements from both drivers.
If you are contacted by a claims adjuster from the other party’s insurance company, you should know that you do not have to answer any of their questions and can elect to have your Baltimore car accident attorney do the talking for you.
Insurance companies are in the business of making money, not taking care of claimants. They will look for every possible avenue to deny your claim, even if the other driver was clearly at fault.
Sometimes, that involves attempting to get the victim to admit fault for the accident and avoid any slips of the tongue by designating your attorney as the contact for all insurance inquiries.
Reasons for Denying an Insurance Claim in Maryland
If the insurance company denies your claim, they should have included their reasoning for denying the claim in their denial. There are a number of reasons why a claim could be partially or fully denied, and while the reason may be legitimate, we urge you to never give up on your claim after you receive a denial until you have received sound legal counsel.
Denials Based on Cause
The reason why insurance companies do investigations into the crash is to determine how it occurred and whether it is covered. An insurance company does not have to cover the claim of an accident victim who is not their insured party if their insured party did not cause the crash. Insurance companies may also issue a denial if they believe the claimant was partially responsible for causing the crash.
Denials Based on Policy
Insurance providers may rely on the fine print to issue a denial. In their notice of denial, the insurance company may claim that the other driver’s insurance policy had lapsed or did not cover the damages claimed. A policy may be insufficient for a claim based on the cause of the accident. Further, if the vehicle driver and owner are not the same person, the owner’s insurance policy might not cover accidents caused by the driver.
Denials Based on Injury
An insurance company may also deny a claim if they have reason to believe that the claimant’s injuries did not result from the crash. This is why it is so essential that you visit an emergency room and seek diagnosis and treatment for all of your injuries immediately after an accident. Getting your harm on record is the most critical step in obtaining the recovery that you are owed.
Denials Based on Time
You only have one year from the date of the accident to submit your insurance claim for personal injury protection coverage. While this may seem like a long time, a staggering number of insurance claims are denied every year because the claimant failed to file on time. Contact our Columbia car accident attorneys today to avoid this unfortunate situation.
What Options Do You Have After Your Insurance Claim is Denied in Maryland?
If the other party’s insurance provider denies your claim, you may be able to work out a settlement arrangement. A settlement deal gets the victim paid some of the value of their claim in exchange for their waiving of the right to go to court.
If the insurance company refuses to negotiate a fair settlement, it is time to start thinking about going to court.
If you believe that the insurance company denied your claim in error, you can file a personal injury lawsuit against the other driver for damages.
Lawsuits may be even more lucrative than insurance claims or settlements in many situations, as you can recover for the non-economic harms that you suffered as a result of your injuries, such as pain and suffering.
Sometimes, insurance companies will issue denials erroneously in an attempt to frustrate claimants out of their pursuit of damages, even when the claim is perfectly valid.
This is a bad-faith tactic, which is often grounds for a lawsuit against the insurance company. A bad faith lawsuit is a separate action from a personal injury lawsuit and can return you the compensation that you deserve, plus additional damages meant to punish the conduct of the insurance company.
Rice, Murtha & Psoras Can Help You Take Your Denied Insurance Claim to Court
If the insurance company is giving you the cold shoulder, you should take action immediately. Call the experienced Ocean City car accident lawyers of Rice, Murtha & Psoras at (410) 694-7291 for a free case assessment today.