Getting involved in a car accident can be a traumatic experience, especially if you sustain injuries as a result. During this challenging time, you rely on your insurance company to provide compensation for the damages and medical expenses incurred. However, it’s not uncommon for insurance companies to deny car accident claims, leaving injury victims feeling frustrated and overwhelmed. Don’t forget, the insurance company is a business, their primary interest is making money, not giving it to you, so don’t be shocked if your perfectly reasonable and logical claim is denied initially.
In this blog post, we will explore some common reasons why an insurance company might deny a car accident claim in Georgia and discuss what steps an injury victim should take if their claim is denied and how a car accident lawyer can help them get the compensation they deserve.
Why Was My Claim Denied?
As we mentioned above, it is in the insurance company’s interest to find something, ANYTHING, that keeps them from having to pay out an insurance claim, especially one after a serious accident with considerable injuries and property damage.
Failure to Report the Accident Promptly
One of the most common reasons for claim denial is the failure to report the accident to the insurance company promptly. Insurance policies typically require policyholders to report accidents within a specific time frame. In Georgia, you have two years to file a claim for bodily injury and four years to file a claim for property damage, but your car insurance provider may require the accident be reported to them in as little as 30 days. If this deadline is missed, the insurer may deny the claim on the grounds of untimely reporting. Therefore, it’s crucial to report the accident as soon as possible to avoid any potential denial based on this reason.
Policy Exclusions or Lapses
Another reason for claim denial can be policy exclusions or lapses. Insurance policies may contain certain exclusions or limitations on coverage. For example, if the policy does not cover accidents caused while driving under the influence or using the vehicle for commercial purposes, the claim might be denied. Additionally, if the policyholder fails to maintain regular premium payments, resulting in a lapse in coverage, the insurer may refuse to honor the claim.
Disputes Regarding Liability
Insurance companies often deny claims when there are disputes regarding liability. In Georgia, being an “at-fault” state, the insurance company of the at-fault party is responsible for covering the damages. If the insurance company believes their insured is not at fault, they may deny the claim. In such cases, it’s essential to gather evidence such as police reports, witness statements, and photographs to support your version of the events and challenge the denial.
Inadequate or Insufficient Documentation
Insufficient documentation can lead to claim denials. If the injured party fails to provide proper documentation of medical treatment, property damage, or other related expenses, the insurance company may question the validity of the claim. It is crucial to maintain detailed records, including police reports, medical bills, repair estimates, and any other relevant documentation to strengthen your case and prevent denial based on inadequate evidence.
A Tip From a Car Accident Lawyer: STAY OFF SOCIAL MEDIA!!
All too often, we see people damage their claims by what they post on social media. Whether that be a blatant admission of fault, acknowledgement of not being injured, or numerous other things, what you say on social media after an accident WILL be used against you if you put it in to the public sphere. Even something as innocuous as you documenting your involvement in an activity that requires intense physical exertion can be used against you to claim that you were not actually hurt at all, or not as bad as your insurance claim suggested, meaning you don’t deserve compensation.
What to Do If Your Claim is Denied
Just because your claim was initially denied does not mean that is the end of the road for you in your pursuit of compensation for your damages. There are several courses of action that can be taken and below we list the most common of these.
Review the Denial Letter
When your claim is denied, the insurance company is required to provide a written explanation outlining the reasons for denial. Carefully review this denial letter to understand the specific grounds on which your claim was rejected.
Contact a Car Accident Lawyer Near You
If your claim is unjustly denied, it’s advisable to consult with an experienced car accident attorney in Georgia. They can review your case, assess the denial letter, and provide guidance on the best course of action. A skilled auto accident attorney will have the knowledge and resources to negotiate with the insurance company and advocate for your rights.
File an Appeal
Your attorney can assist you in filing an appeal with the insurance company. This involves presenting additional evidence and arguments to challenge the denial. It’s crucial to adhere to the appeal deadlines specified in your policy to ensure your rights are protected.
Consider Legal Action:
If the appeal process does not yield a favorable outcome, your personal injury attorney may recommend pursuing legal action against the insurance company. A lawsuit can be filed in a Georgia court to seek compensation for your injuries and damages. Your attorney will guide you through the litigation process and fight for your rights in court.
If Insurance Denies Your Claim, Call SHElaw firm® Today! We Fight For You!
Facing a denial of a car accident claim in Georgia can be disheartening, but it doesn’t mean you have no options. By understanding the potential reasons for claim denial and taking the appropriate steps, such as promptly reporting the accident, maintaining proper documentation, seeking legal assistance, and appealing or pursuing legal action when necessary, you can increase your chances of obtaining the compensation you deserve. Remember, an experienced car accident attorney at SHElaw firm® can provide invaluable support and representation throughout this complex process.
Call our office today at 470-378-1162 to receive a risk-free initial consultation with our team. Attorney Shequel Ross and the rest of the team at SHElaw firm® are committed to providing aggressive representation for injury victims and will seek maximum compensation for your damages.