Can I Sue My Health Insurance Company Under the Insurance Bad Faith Law?
Each of us has a right to expect that our health insurance companies will act in good faith when handling health insurance claims or a request for care that is covered under our policies. When legitimate health care is denied, there can be terrible consequences to patients including the progression of an illness or even the death of a loved one. When a health insurer acts in bad faith, the insured may be able to recover damages through a civil lawsuit.
When a health insurance company acts in bad faith
A health insurance company may have acted in bad faith if they:
- Deny coverage for legitimate health care claims covered under the health insurance policy
- Failure to respond to a claim or request for service in a timely manner
- Refuse to settle a conflict
- Failure to investigate a claim appropriately
Civil lawsuit against health insurance company
In a civil lawsuit insurance companies will rigorously defend themselves so hiring an experienced medical malpractice lawyer to handle the case is vital. Find an experienced personal injury attorney in your state who can discuss your legal rights and may be able to help navigate the case on your behalf.
The personal injury attorney will:
- Read the insurance policy to ensure that the patient followed the policy’s requirements for receiving treatment such as seeking a referral from a primary care physician.
- Read the insurance policy to ensure that the patient sought care at a health care facility covered by the insurance policy and that the care requested was covered by the insurance policy.
- Gather all paperwork showing requests for care, claims sent to the insurer and denial letters sent from the insurer.
- Ensure that every opportunity to file an appeal has been taken. This means that each time a denial letter was received that the patient or medical care provider filed an appeal with the insurer asking for reconsideration.
If the personal injury attorney agrees that there is a strong case that the health insurer acted in bad faith, he or she may agree to take on your case and fight to recover damages such as pain and suffering, lost wages, emotional trauma and more on your behalf.
Do not sign paperwork from your health insurance company before speaking to a personal injury attorney!
Health insurance companies will often try to mail a check to the insured, reimbursing them for their premiums. This is a devious way to get out of paying for the true value of damages caused by their failure to provide coverage in good faith. If you receive a letter or offer from your insurance company after a lawsuit has begun, contact your lawyer right away.
If you have lost a loved one or been injured through no fault of your own, you have enough on your plate. Let an experienced accident attorney fight for the justice and fair compensation that you deserve. It is not uncommon to receive a settlement from the insurance company that is five to ten times larger with the help of a lawyer. Call the caring, tireless and experienced wrongful death attorneys at Tario & Associates, P.S. in Bellingham, WA today for a FREE consultation! We have been representing residents of Whatcom County, Skagit County and surrounding areas since 1979. You will pay nothing up front and no attorney fees at all unless we recover damages for you!