When people think of bad faith insurance, they often think of simply not being paid the money that they believe they’re owed. For example, say your home is damaged in a tropical storm, and it needs $200,000 in repairs. The insurance company only agrees to pay $100,000, even though it will clearly cost much more than that to fix the damage to the home.
This is certainly an example of bad faith insurance, but be careful not to assume that it’s the only one. What if the insurance company just takes far too long to pay you anything at all?
Are the delays unreasonable?
There are times in which delays can constitute bad faith insurance. This is usually if those delays are deemed to be unreasonable.
In other words, you can’t expect the insurance company to respond instantly. There are different steps that have to be taken and they may need to do their own investigation to determine what they think you should be paid.
But, at the same time, they can’t use a delay as a way to try to force your hand. Maybe they want to offer you much less than you actually need. They think that dragging their feet and delaying the process is going to make you feel desperate – after all, your home needs to be repaired so that it can be a safe and healthy place to live – so that you will accept less money. This type of delay or manipulation is not the service that you deserve or what you expected when you bought that insurance policy
If you have found yourself in a situation where you do not think that the insurance company is holding up their side of the deal, make sure you know what legal steps you can take.