I read an interesting expose put out by the American Association of Justice regarding insurance company tactics employed to prevent ordinary citizens from getting appropriate compensation for their injuries. Tricks of the Trade: How Insurance Companies Deny, Delay, Confuse and Refuse is written in the form of a law review article and tells the sad tale of the lengths that insurance companies will go to in their effort to subvert justice.
I do not intend, in this forum to regurgitate the entire article; it is very well written and informative, and the consumer (and the attorney) would be wise to read the entire article. To highlight, however, the article breaks down insurance tactics into six distinct categories:
1. Deny: This refers to the tactic of systematically denying claims to increase the bottom line, rewarding employees who do it well and punishing or replacing those who don’t.
2. Delay: This is the practice of payment avoidance until people give up (Lawsuit Financial can provide assistance, here; more on that later) or, in despicable fashion, with elderly and chronically ill policy holders, refuse payment until the policy holder dies!
3. Incomprehensibilty: Refers to policy language that is virtually impossible for a lay person to understand, resulting in their not pursuing valuable, paid for, rights
4. Credit Scoring: The companies use credit scores to artificially increase rates to the poor and certain ethnic groups.
5. Retroactive Rescission or Cancellation: This is a policy used against seriously ill people to avoid paying a claim that will require multiple and substantial benefits over time because of the severity of the illness or injury.
6. Canceling for an Inquiry: This is the practice of canceling someone before they file a claim for the “sin” of merely inquiring about the possibility.
The article suggests several measures that the consumer can take to help avoid these tactics. The article recommends that the consumer:
Read his/her policy carefully, know his/her coverages and how to appeal a denial of coverage.
Be very careful in completing insurance claims forms as the insurance company may use an honest mistake as a reason to cancel or deny coverage.
Do not cash a premium refund check because this will likely rescind the consumer’s insurance policy.
Put everything in writing; you will likely need it for proof. Keep a record of all correspondence and bills.
Contact your state insurance department or, if all else fails, consult with a lawyer. Most of all, says the author, DO NOT GIVE UP. Insurance companies count on you giving up. The author encourages you to fight for your rights.
While I strongly urge all consumers to read the important article that inspired this post, it does not mention lawsuit funding as an option to avoid some of these tactics and that is, in my humble opinion, a fundamental failing.
After you’ve hired that lawyer and decided not to give up, this serious question arises if you are injured and/or disabled: “How am I going to pay my bills? How can I fight this huge, well-financed and powerful insurance company when I can’t work and have no income or savings?”
The answer, of course, is a non-recourse, legal cash advance from Lawsuit Financial. Legal finance is the great equalizer; the money that you need to get you from an earlier stage in the lawsuit to its conclusion. You will not have to cave in to insurance company stall tactics; legal funding will level the playing field and give you the staying power to slay Goliath. Lawsuit Financial provides litigation funding for most personal injury cases, disability cases and other insurance cases. Call us, toll free, at 1-877-377-SUIT (7848) or visit us on the web at www.lawsuitfinancial.com. We will evaluate your lawsuit funding situation promptly and fairly, often in less than 24 hours. You have nothing to lose. The call is free; the advice could save your valuable assets and, above all, save your valuable case.