You purchase insurance – such as homeowners insurance – to help ensure that you are covered if you experience a loss. When you have a claim, you expect the insurance company to get back to you promptly, but this isn’t always the case.
While there are many reasons for a tardy response from an insurance provider, failure to get back to claimants sometimes amounts to a bad faith practice in which the insurance company is more interested in protecting their profits than it is in covering their policyholders.
If you are beginning to wonder what to do when an insurance company ignores you, it’s time to consult with an experienced Texas insurance claim attorney.
Could Your Insurance Company Be Ignoring You?
Failing to call you back immediately or being too busy to get back to you is not the same as the insurance company ignoring you or your calls. If you have already filed your claim, it’s essential to understand that they tend to be time-consuming endeavors, and it is unlikely that you will be – or need to be – in constant contact with your insurance rep.
You want the person handling your claim to take the necessary time and have the patience to review, evaluate, and investigate it as thoroughly as necessary.
If your adjuster doesn’t have adequate time to do your claim justice, your claim could end up being undervalued, which makes it more difficult for you to fully recover. Sometimes, the adjuster doesn’t have all the necessary information at hand to make the kind of determination you’re looking for and is simply waiting for another party to provide the required documentation.
The best initial course of action is to keep your cool and manage your frustrations while remaining persistent regarding your need for reasonable communications with the insurance company.
If the Insurance Company Is Not Responding to Your Claim
If you have come to the challenging realization that your insurance adjuster is not responding, there are several steps you can take to help get the ball rolling, including:
Make a follow-up call: You called, left a message, and are still awaiting a response. When it’s a matter of the insurance company ignoring calls, it’s time to take a deep breath and follow up with another voicemail and another friendly reminder that you’re still waiting. By starting here, you help to ensure that the matter doesn’t snowball into an all-out war when this may be all the fix you need.
Send a follow-up Letter or fax: If the phone route does not achieve the results you’re looking for, memorialize your concern in a follow-up letter that you send in the mail or by fax. The fact that mail flows into your claim may prompt action on the part of the adjuster or someone else from the insurance company.
Contact the general claims department: If your above efforts don’t get you anywhere, call the general claims department, which will connect you with a live employee who has access to your claim and may be able to offer assistance or may interact internally with your adjuster.
Connect with the supervisor: If your efforts to date are not moving the needle, it’s time to reach out to your adjuster’s supervisor, and you may have to do a bit of digging to get their name and number. This step helps to shine a light on the issue of an insurance adjuster not responding and may help expedite the process.
If you’ve put in the time and effort to go through each of these steps, you’ve done your part – and then some – and the insurance company may be outside the boundaries of the law in terms of good faith practices. If this is where you find yourself, it’s time to discuss your concerns with a dedicated insurance claim attorney.
Bad Faith Practices
Bad faith – as it relates to the insurance company’s handling of your claim – refers to practices such as the following:
- Not responding to your inquiries in a reasonable amount of time
- Not handling your claim fairly
- Not proceeding with your claim in accordance with its responsibility – per the insurance contract
If the insurance company handling your claim is motivated to keep your settlement lower than is fair or to prolong the settlement process in order to bolster its profits, it’s engaging in a bad faith practice and should be called on it.
Bad Faith Insurance Practice FAQs
What should I do if I feel pressured?
If the insurance company is pressuring you to accept a settlement offer that it hastily threw together after first ignoring your claim – or at any time – it’s time to take stock. If the offer doesn’t cover your complete losses or you’re not sure it’s adequate, reach out to an experienced insurance claim attorney.
What are common bad faith practices?
Some of the most common bad faith practices when it comes to insurance companies include:
- Prolonging the claims process
- Complicating the claims process
- Pressuring claimants to settle for amounts that are less than fair
- Ignoring claimants in the hope they’ll give up
Do I have to have an attorney for a bad faith insurance claim?
If your insurance company is engaging in bad faith practices, it’s important to have an experienced insurance claim attorney on your side.
Turn to an Experienced Texas Insurance Claim Attorney for the Help You Need
If the insurance company handling your claim is not getting back to you and has stretched the limits of reasonable – or is otherwise crossing the line into bad faith practices, the seasoned insurance claim attorneys at Haun Mena – proudly serving Houston – are standing by to help. Your claim is important, so please don’t hesitate to contact or call us at 713-561-5334 for more information about what we can do to help you today.