What Can Crash Victims do if the Insurance Company Denies Their Claim?

closed insurance claims files
closed insurance claims files

Despite what you hear in their advertisements, car insurance companies are not committed to your best interests. They are committed to their bottom line, which means they process claims based on what will make them money or save them money. That is why car insurance companies often deny claims filed by crash victims.

Fortunately, you have options if your insurance claim was denied. Our experienced Cleveland auto accident lawyers are available to discuss your next steps after your insurance claim has been denied. We have helped countless crash victims recover compensation for more than four decades serving Northeast Ohio. We are prepared to appeal a denied claim or even file a lawsuit to pursue the compensation you need.

An initial legal consultation with one of our licensed attorneys is free of charge and there is no obligation to hire our firm. We also do not charge upfront fees for our services, which means there is no financial risk with hiring our firm.

Options if Your Claim Was Denied

Insurance companies have their own appeal processes for denied claims. If your claim was denied for any reason, you should talk to an experienced attorney about filing an appeal. Your attorney can request more information from the insurance company about why your claim was denied to determine what additional evidence you may need.

At our firm, we have dealt with many insurance companies and denied claims. We know how to gather strong evidence to give you a chance to try to overturn a denied claim. Not only can we request clarification from the insurance company, but we can also launch a detailed investigation to help us build your case.

One of the benefits of hiring an experienced attorney is the insurance company is likely to take your claim more seriously. Our attorneys regularly take cases to court, which means if you are represented by one of our attorneys, the insurance company will know there is a possibility of a lawsuit being filed. This may make them more likely to make a better offer. Insurers often want to avoid the added time and expense of the courtroom.

The legal process is complicated and if you try to go it alone details could get missed. This could hurt your chances of overturning the denial of your claim on appeal. Our attorneys deal with insurance claims every day and we know how to build strong cases.

Reasons Insurers Give for Denying Claims

There are various reasons car insurance companies give for denying claims, sometimes they are legitimate and sometimes they are flimsy excuses. Insurance companies may say:

  • Victim bears most of the fault for the crash – You can recover compensation if you are partially at fault for a car crash in Ohio. Under the state’s comparative fault law, you are only barred from recovery if you are more than 50 percent at fault. If you are partially at fault, it is in the insurance company’s interest to exaggerate your percentage of fault.
  • Your injury is a symptom of a preexisting condition and not the crash – Insurance companies routinely claim the victim was not injured in the crash and the injury is because of a preexisting medical issue. That is why they often ask victims for their medical records – they want to find an existing medical issue to blame your injury on. It is important to note you could recover compensation if the crash aggravated an existing injury. In these situations, it is vital to hire an attorney. The experienced attorneys at our firm have the resources and knowledge to build a strong case for aggravation of an existing injury.
  • You did not report the crash quickly enough – The insurance company’s denial letter may say you did not report the crash in a timely manner, but it may not define timely. Insurance companies often give vague reasons for denying a claim, hoping the victim will simply give up. That is why it is important to ask the insurance company for clarification about why a claim was denied. The insurance company may deny the claim because there is no police report. However, this is unlikely to hold up unless the policy says a police report must be filed.
  • You did not get medical attention quickly enough – The insurance company may say your injury was caused by something else because there is a significant gap in time between the crash and when you received medical care. However, an attorney can help you prove your claim, even with a gap between the date of the crash and the first time you saw a doctor. If your crash was caused by another’s negligence, and you have a documented injury, you should have a case.
  • At-fault driver was not on the policy – In Ohio, insurance typically follows the car, so this should not matter. If the driver was specifically excluded from coverage on the car, and he or she does not have his or her own insurance, you may need to file an uninsured motorist claim with your own insurance company.

Was Your Claim Denied? Call Today for Legal Help

There are many benefits to hiring an attorney to help with your car insurance claim, especially if your claim has already been denied. At Friedman, Domiano & Smith, we have dealt with many insurance companies over the years, and we know how to pursue full compensation for your damages.

We can manage every aspect of the legal process on your behalf at no upfront cost to you. This includes negotiating with the insurance company and gather evidence to strengthen your claim.

Call today to learn more: 216-621-0070.


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