Insurance Claims: How an Insurance Bad Faith Attorney Can Help

Get Legal Help Today

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

Full Bio →

Written by

UPDATED: Jul 16, 2021

Advertiser Disclosure

It’s all about you. We want to help you make the right legal decisions.

We strive to help you make confident insurance and legal decisions. Finding trusted and reliable insurance quotes and legal advice should be easy. This doesn’t influence our content. Our opinions are our own.

Editorial Guidelines: We are a free online resource for anyone interested in learning more about legal topics and insurance. Our goal is to be an objective, third-party resource for everything legal and insurance related. We update our site regularly, and all content is reviewed by experts.

It is not unusual for an insurance company to limit or even deny coverage of a claim without proper justification or warning. Not every act of an insurance company with which you disagree is bad faith, but if you have been treated unfairly and have been denied coverage or a reasonable settlement wrongfully, you may have a case for bad faith against your carrier.

The question is, how do you know? You can always file a complaint with your state’s Department of Insurance, but only by hiring a qualified attorney who specializes in insurance bad faith will you be able to get high-quality advice regarding whether or not the insurer’s actions fall within the definition of bad faith, and whether or not you have a case. Keep in mind that state, not federal law, regulates insurance practices. There is no uniform definition for insurance bad faith. An experienced attorney in this field knows the law in your state, and will be able to assist you.

In the United States, it is the general rule of law that each party pays its own attorneys’ fees, referred to as “The American Rule,” differing from the English Law which requires only the responsible party to pay the fees for both sides. Some states, however, have carved out judicially created exceptions to the American Rule, one of which allows for the wronged party in an insurance bad faith lawsuit to be granted attorneys’ fees as part of the award. Such exceptions exist at least in New York, Pennsylvania and Utah. Again, an experienced attorney will be able to advise you regarding whether or not attorneys’ fees will be included as part of the award in your state.

In bad faith cases, where the American Rule applies, the vast majority of attorneys will work on a contingency fee basis; that is, they will take a percentage of the settlement or award as their fee. If you lose your case, you pay nothing but their costs for such things as materials, copying, phone calls, etc. Make sure that you completely understand how the fees are to be paid before you hire legal counsel.

For a no-cost, no-obligation evaluation of your case, fill out our free case evaluation form and a top-rated attorney will contact you. Our Insurance Advice site has links for all state departments of insurance.

For more information about bad faith insurance practices and claims, see the following articles:

How to File a Complaint with Your State Department of Insurance

Insurance Claims: Typical Bad Faith Insurance Lawsuits and Awards

Don’t Be Afraid of the Big, Bad Insurance Company!

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption