Denver Bad Faith Insurance Attorney
When you experience losses that are covered by an insurance company, the last thing that you might expect is to be dealt with unfairly by the insurer. Yet in spite of promises and advertisements otherwise, insurance companies are not on your side. They often use a variety of tactics known as insurance bad faith to avoid paying claimants fair financial compensation for their covered losses.
If you believe you are a victim of insurance bad faith in Colorado, contact the Denver bad faith insurance attorneys at Cannon Law to request a free case evaluation. Our law firm is here to help you understand and defend your rights.
Denver Bad Faith Insurance Legal Resources
- Why Choose Cannon Law?
- What Is the Definition of Bad Faith Insurance?
- What Are Your Rights as a Victim of Insurance Bad Faith in Denver, CO?
- What Are the Common Law Elements of Insurance Bad Faith in Colorado?
- What Should I Do if I’ve Been Offered a Low Settlement From an Insurance Company?
- What Are Common Bad Faith Insurance Tactics?
- What Is the Time Limit to File a Bad Faith Insurance Claim in Colorado?
- How Can Our Denver Bad Faith Insurance Lawyers Help?
- Contact Us
Why Choose Cannon Law?
- We offer a tailored approach to legal services. We know that your case is entirely unique. We will work closely with you to establish your specific goals and develop the appropriate legal strategy to pursue them.
- The attorneys at Cannon Law have years of experience going up against insurance companies and other powerful defendants. We have recovered millions of dollars on behalf of our clients from insurance providers throughout Colorado.
- Our lawyers in Denver offer their bad faith insurance representation on a contingency fee basis. This means that you won’t pay us a cent unless we collect financial compensation for your claim.
What Is the Definition of Bad Faith Insurance?
Bad faith insurance means that an insurance company has failed to fulfill its legal obligation to pay a policyholder’s legal claim or process it in an honest and good-faith attempt to resolve the claim. There are federal and state laws in the U.S. that require insurance companies to act in a certain way when investigating and processing claims. They must investigate within a reasonable amount of time, for instance, and offer an amount that is appropriate based on the policyholder’s losses and the terms of the policy.
Insurance bad faith occurs when an insurer knowingly breaks state or federal insurance laws. Simple mistakes by an insurance company do not meet the definition of bad faith. Bad faith means that the insurer is acting in a way that violates its contractual obligations to the policyholder. Many instances of bad faith insurance are an attempt by the insurance company to save money on the policyholder’s payout.
As a general rule, insurance companies are more interested in saving their investors money than paying their policyholders. This can lead to many actions of bad faith by the insurance company and its representatives, including offering a policyholder significantly less than the true value of a claim. It is important to be aware of the possibility of bad faith during your insurance claim, so that you can detect this problem and take steps to protect yourself.
What Are Your Rights as a Victim of Insurance Bad Faith in Denver, CO?
Insurance bad faith is more than just a nuisance or inconvenience for a policyholder. It can interfere with the ability to receive the financial compensation that you need to move forward from a serious accident or incident, such as a car crash or house fire. This can make it impossible to pay related bills and rebuild your life. It can make the recovery process more difficult than it needs to be, creating further problems on top of your existing property damage or bodily injuries.
If you are a victim of bad faith insurance in Colorado, you have the right to hire a lawyer to help you demand justice. With help from a lawyer, you can bring the issue to the insurance company’s attention and demand fair dealings from the insurer. If the company still refuses to handle your claim correctly and in accordance with the law, your lawyer can hold the company accountable by filing a bad faith insurance lawsuit on your behalf.
A bad faith insurance lawsuit in Colorado can result in financial compensation awarded to you, the wronged policyholder, for the insurance company’s failure to process your claim in a lawful and ethical manner. This compensation can come in addition to a fair settlement value for your original claim, as a form of punishment against the insurer for its wrongful acts. To win this type of lawsuit, you or your lawyer must establish the required elements of a claim.
What Are the Common Law Elements of Insurance Bad Faith in Colorado?
While the definition of insurance bad faith is similar across the country, each state has its own insurance bad faith laws. Chapter 25 of the Colorado Legislature contains the state’s bad faith law. If you wish to bring a lawsuit against an insurance company for handling your claim in bad faith in Colorado, you must establish the following common law elements:
- You sustained damages. As the plaintiff, you must have injuries, damages or losses that are compensable under the rules of the civil justice system, such as financial losses or pain and suffering.
- The insurance company acted unreasonably. State law defines unreasonable behavior as the failure to perform the way that a reasonably careful insurer would under the same or similar circumstances to protect the person who is insured from losses.
- You sustained losses as a result of the insurance company’s unreasonable conduct. The insurance company’s unreasonable behavior must be the proximate, or main, cause of your compensable damages.
If you are bringing a bad faith claim against your own insurance company (a first-party claim), you will have the added element of proving that the insurance company was either aware that its conduct was unreasonable or recklessly disregarded the fact that it was not behaving properly. If your lawyer can prove the elements of a bad faith insurance claim, you can receive financial compensation for related losses.
What Should I Do if I’ve Been Offered a Low Settlement From an Insurance Company?
One of the most common examples of insurance bad faith in Colorado is a low settlement offer. A low offer can constitute bad faith if it is unreasonably low for the circumstances – often referred to as a “lowball” offer. How you respond to a low settlement offer can determine the ultimate outcome of your claim. Take the following actions if you find yourself in this situation.
First, remain calm and take the time to analyze the offer. Resist the temptation to immediately reply with an angry or emotional response. It is important to maintain a sense of professionalism when dealing with an insurance claims adjuster or agent. Keep in mind that the initial offer is only a starting point for further settlement negotiations that will typically increase the final value of your settlement.
Contact an Attorney for a Counteroffer
You should respond to a low settlement offer in writing with something called a counteroffer. An insurance lawyer can help you craft your response in a way that will increase the odds of a positive case outcome. Your lawyer will ask the right questions to determine the cause of the low settlement offer. Then, your lawyer will craft a strong legal strategy to increase the offer to a fair amount. If the insurance company still refuses to offer a reasonable settlement, your lawyer can take the insurer to court with a bad faith lawsuit to demand justice.
What Are Common Bad Faith Insurance Tactics?
Insurance bad faith can take many forms. Any action, conduct or behavior that a reasonable insurance company would not commit under similar circumstances may constitute bad faith. It is important to recognize common examples of insurance bad faith in Colorado, as this is the first step toward protecting your rights as a claimant. The following are common tactics used by insurance companies when they mishandle claims:
- Unreasonable claim delay. Insurance companies have time limits in Colorado by which they must respond to claims and come to a decision. Delaying the investigation or processing of a claim without a valid reason is bad faith.
- Requiring unnecessary documentation. If an insurance company asks for an excessive amount of proof or documents to support your claim, this could be bad faith. Failing to conduct a thorough investigation is also bad faith.
- Denial of a valid claim. Wrongful claim denials are a common form of bad faith. If you believe your claim should have been paid based on the circumstances of your losses and the language of the policy, you could be a victim of bad faith.
- Low settlement offer. The offer made by an insurance company should be reasonable and appropriate according to the extent of your losses and the limits of the policy.
- Misrepresenting facts or insurance policy terms. An insurer may do this when selling you a policy or processing your claim in an attempt to pay you less than you deserve.
Colorado law states that you could obtain double or even triple damages if an insurance company acts in bad faith. If there is evidence that an insurance company is breaking the law by breaching your contract or behaving in bad faith, contact an attorney right away. Any of these common examples of bad faith insurance could qualify you to recover two or three times the “covered benefit,” or the amount the insurer owes you under the policy.
What Is the Time Limit to File a Bad Faith Insurance Claim in Colorado?
It is important to act quickly to hire an attorney and take action against an insurance company if it handles your claim in bad faith. Colorado has a law known as a statute of limitations on filing a bad faith insurance claim. Currently, the time limit on tort actions is two years from the date of the wrongful conduct.
With only some exceptions, if you fail to file a claim against an insurance company for bad faith within two years, you will be barred from making a financial recovery. It can be difficult to determine the exact date on which you became a victim of bad faith due to the nature of this tort. For this reason, it is important to discuss a potential case with an attorney in Colorado as soon as possible.
How Can Our Denver Bad Faith Insurance Lawyers Help?
If you believe you are a victim of bad faith insurance in Denver, the attorneys at Cannon Law can help you protect your legal rights. We use a team-based approach to put several minds to work on each case – including lawyers, doctors and expert witnesses. This optimizes the odds of successfully going up against an insurance company. As your attorneys, we can help your bad faith claim in many ways, including:
- Filing and conducting the necessary correspondence with an insurance company within Colorado’s mandated time limits to help prevent insurance bad faith.
- Handling bad faith insurance as efficiently and effectively as possible. We will correspond with the insurer early on to achieve a fast and positive case resolution.
- Dealing with complicated elements of Colorado and federal law on your behalf. Our attorneys can help you understand which laws apply to your case, prepare motions and evidence to strengthen your bad faith claim, and represent you at all court hearings and trials.
- Helping you recover higher damages (financial compensation) from an insurance provider compared to not hiring a bad faith attorney.
- Expertly navigating the legal landscape while you focus on your future. We understand how to hold insurance companies responsible and accountable for bad faith insurance practices.
You do not have to be an insurance expert to protect yourself from bad faith in Colorado. You can hire the attorneys at Cannon Law to represent you when going up against an insurance corporation for mishandling your claim. We will take over your case using years of training and legal experience. We will put our knowledge to work for you to achieve the best results possible for your original claim as well as a bad faith insurance lawsuit.
Insurance bad faith is a complicated area of the law. It is important to protect yourself with strong legal representation as a victim. At Cannon Law, our Denver bad faith insurance attorneys can help you determine your legal rights and take the right steps forward. We will be your advocates in all things, negotiating for the case results that you deserve during an insurance bad faith claim. We will not let an insurance company take advantage of you during this difficult time.
To learn more about how our law firm can help you as a victim of insurance bad faith in Denver, contact us to request a free case review. Please call (970) 471-7170 to reach our local law office or send us a brief message through our contact form. We are available 24/7.