People get car insurance to take care of the liabilities, including loss of life, bodily injuries, or property loss. Yet, insurance companies deny claims and do so regularly. The aftermath of an accident is always bewildering. When your claim is denied, you may feel helpless and with no shoulder to lean on.
The good news is that you could do a few things to have the insurer’s decision reconsidered, and the two parties can reach a win-win situation. This article shares this, but first, you need to understand what a claim denial means and why you may suffer it.
Understand why the insurer denied your claims
Now that you understand what constitutes a claim denial, you would not mind knowing why people receive claim denials. Every auto insurer has a team of experts called insurance claim adjusters. If a claim is filed, they review it to determine its legal responsibility in taking care of the liabilities. Notably, the policies governing auto insurances change constantly, and you need to be abreast with the adjustments.
Typically, a claim with documented damages and reliable witnesses will always be accepted by the insurer and the liabilities compensated for. However, there are exceptional cases in which, because of one reason or the other. Here are the common reasons why insurers may deny your claims:
Late reporting of the accident: You need to report an accident as soon as possible, and you could even file a claim as you wait for the police. Suppose you fail to seek medical attention after the accident or report to the company or the insurer in time. In that case, your claim may be denied because of possible insurance fraud.
Your claims cost more than your coverage: If you are at fault and the other driver’s medical bills cost $20,000. Still, your injury coverage is set to $15,000 yearly, the insurer will deny the additional $5,000.
You were breaking the law when the accident occurred: Driving while drinking or driving without a license during an accident may amount to claim denial.
You don’t have the required coverage: If you lack comprehensive coverage and your car is damaged by a non-collision-related accident, the insurer may deny the claim.
You are not being honest: Suppose you lied during the application or misled the company with the mileage and upgraded the information you provided. In that case, the insurer may deny claims that it would typically cover.
What to do in case a claim is denied.
The reasons listed above would constitute car insurance claim denial. Because of their validity, they can hold up against you if you take your case to court. However, there are some things you can do to appeal and have your case reconsidered.
Be diligent with reporting:
When an accident occurs, report it as soon as possible, depending on the situation. For instance, generally, all of the best cheap car insurance companies have official websites that you can log onto and file the case.
Provide enough evidence.
As you wait for the police or report to your insurer an accident, gather as much evidence as you can. Take as many photos as possible to provide every needed detail. If possible, capture video footage. In addition, you need to keep proof of reporting to police because alongside the video footage and photos, your case might be reconsidered.
Always file claims within your company.
When you are at fault in an accident, you will definitely file claims within your company. However, when the other driver is at fault, many people mistake filing claims with the other driver’s insurers. Because of the lack of insurance experts and expertise on your side, your claims can be denied. Therefore, always file claims within your company. Your insurer will help point the claims with the other insurers through subrogation.
Know your limits when you disagree while settling claims, and be ready with proof of maintenance.
In some cases, your car may be completely damaged, and you need total compensation. However, keep in mind that the insurers value cars based on their “actual value,” which could be far less than what you expected. Therefore, you may feel entitled to extra checks in such events but know your limits. To be eligible for any additional compensation, you might need to provide proof of maintenance.
For instance, you will need documentation and receipts to keep the vehicle in the garage and regularly maintain it. And if it had low mileage at the time of the accident, be ready to provide evidence for this.
A car insurance claim denial defines a situation whereby the car insurance company denies taking responsibility for the liabilities. Or only takes a fraction of the financial implication upon filing claims after an accident or any eventuality that causes losses. This can happen from your insurer or the other driver’s insurance company for several reasons, including breaking the law during the accident.
Also, asking for more significant claims than your premiums, not having the right coverage, or lying to the insurer. Although all the reasons are valid and can hold up, you can increase the chances of having your denial reconsidered by having proof of maintenance ready. Reporting the accident in time and filing claims within your company.
Rose Rosie is a writer for the personal finance website Joy Wallet, which provides readers with helpful information, resources, and tools to help maximize their financial fitness.