Why Insurance Companies Usually Do Not Pay Auto Accident Claims Quickly

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As an Orlando personal injury attorney, one of the things that clients frequently do not understand is why insurance companies do not pay auto accident claims more quickly.

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Rare Cases Where Insurance Companies Pay Auto Accident Claims Quickly

why insurance companies delay payment on auto accident casesIn very rare auto accident cases, insurance companies will pay auto accident claims quickly.  This generally includes only those auto accident cases in which the fault of the other driver is absurdly obvious, and the injuries and typically medical bills clearly exceed the value of any available policy limits.  Even in those cases, they will not pay quickly without a personal injury attorney.  The only reason they pay those claims quickly is because they can be hit with something called an insurance bad faith claim if they do not.

Insurance Bad Faith The Only Motivational Tool

Bad faith cases are those in which the insurance company could and should have paid the auto accident claim, had they been acting in the best interests of the insured.  They are very difficult and time-consuming to establish and not typical.  But they are the only stick that plaintiffs have against insurance companies — and they have an effect when the injuries are significant — especially if the policy limits are low.  But, if the insurance company does not pay the policy limits in those car, truck, motorcycle, biking or pedestrian accident cases, then they risk being on the hook for the entire amount of the damages (above the policy limits).  So they are inspired to pay those claims quickly.

The Only Good Reason For Delaying Payment In An Auto Accident Case

Another reason for delays is that the human body must receive treatment and heal after an accident, unless the accident caused death rather than injury.  This treatment and healing takes time.  We do not know the extent of the ultimate injuries at the outset of the case.  This is one reason why it is important to hire an Orlando auto accident attorney who will not rush your case.  Moving too quickly through your auto accident case often will reduce the value because we do not yet know how all of your injuries will play out.

Insurance Company Profits Are The Only Thing That Matter To Them

insurance companies benefit from not paying auto accident claims more quicklyBesides those two situations, the worse news is that insurance companies do not pay because they have had a new operational model since around the mid-1990’s, which is focused heavily on profits above all else.  I cannot overstate the negative impact this development has had on timely or fair resolution of motorcycle, car, truck, bicycle and pedestrian accident claims against insurance companies.  These companies were hit hard by Hurricane Hugo.  So one of the biggest, Allstate, began consulting with a New York efficiency firm.  This firm advised them to begin a deliberate process of delaying payment of claims, offering very low settlement amounts, below what was actually owed, and defending lawsuits vigorously.  This is a very big reason why you should never deal with an insurance company without an attorney.

Now Getting Real Justice Is More Difficult Than Ever

So the insurance companies switched from having a pay somewhat fairly model, to a deliberate and very calculated attempt to treat every claimant unfairly.  This is unfair even to their own insureds (those who purchased insurance from them), since they paid for coverage that they really do not get.  Often the only way even an auto accident attorney can get them to play fairly is by filing a lawsuit.  Some settlement mill firms do not file lawsuits but instead encourage people to take the last highest offer.  This may be the best a personal injury attorney can do in a less serious injury case, such as one involving only soft tissue injuries, because a lawsuit cannot be justified as a practical matter.  But settlement mill practices operate as an extreme injustice to those with moderate to severe injuries.  The insurance company pays far less than they should and the case is resolved quickly.  This is absolutely not how a moderate to serious or catastrophic personal injury lawsuit should ever be handled.

Why Would They Do This?

why insurance companies delay payment in car, truck, motorcycle, bicycle and pedestrian accident casesThe insurance companies benefit in a few different ways from delaying motorcycle, car, truck, bicycle and pedestrian accident claims.  First, the injured person may be forced to settle more quickly, and for less, because they need the money.  The insurance companies also benefit by holding onto their money for longer.  In some cases, the insurance company may benefit if someone is older or catastrophically injured because the person may die.  If the person dies, the resulting lawsuit will generally be worth less than if the person lived and needed a lifetime of serious medical care.  They also benefit if the injured person does not understand that they do not have to accept low ball offers, which is usually what happens if they do not hire an auto accident or personal injury attorney.

I Fight Vigorously & Can Help You More If You Call Sooner Rather Than Later

If you were injured during an auto accident, I cannot more strongly urge you to call me, and quickly.  You need an Orlando personal injury attorney who will fight low ball offers with hard ball tactics.  I am that person.  And time is money in these cases.  You only pay me if I recover money for you, so consultations are free.

Where I Accept Cases

I am an Orlando personal injury attorney, but I will provide the same level of highly personalized service in moderate to severe injury cases all over the states of Florida and Georgia.  This includes nearby Orlando suburbs such as Winter Garden, Ocoee, Clermont, Windermere, Dr. Phillips, Kissimmee, Winter Park, Casselberry, Maitland, Daytona Beach, Deland, Deltona, Altamonte Springs, Apopka, Tavares, Eustis, Leesburg, Mount Dora, and Leesburg.  I will also accept moderate to severe injury cases from other parts of Florida or Georgia, including Tampa, Melbourne, Tallahassee, Jacksonville, West Palm Beach, Miami, Valdosta, Macon, Atlanta, and all points in between.

Call Now! (407) 803-2139

Related Posts:

Why You Should Never Deal With An Insurance Company Without An Attorney

Pitfalls Of Hiring A Personal Injury Settlement Mill Law Firm


About the Author:

Tina Willis is a serious injury, accident & death lawyer, based in Orlando, Florida, although she accepts cases throughout the state of Florida, and in Georgia, where she is also licensed. She vigorously prosecutes serious injury and death cases caused by auto accidents, semi-truck accidents, slip and fall accidents, products & premises liability cases, as well as medical malpractice. Ms. Willis operates a boutique law firm from Orlando, Florida, focused on maintaining a reasonable case load so that she can provide personalized service to all of her clients. She spends a tremendous amount of time helping her clients understand how they can help increase the value of their cases, sometimes significantly. After graduating second in her class from Florida State University College of Law in 1995, Ms. Willis worked as an attorney for two large Atlanta defense firms, where she practiced excess insurer defense, and worked on countless multi-million dollar cases. Ms. Willis also worked as a law professor at Barry University. She has also recovered millions for her own accident clients. Ms. Willis has attained many impressive industry awards, including (1) being nominated as a “Ten Best Female Lawyers” in Florida, by the American Institute of Personal Injury Attorneys; (2) being selected as one of the “10 Best Florida Lawyers,” by the American Institute of Legal Counsel; (3) being selected as a National Trial Lawyers as a Top 100 Trial Lawyer; (4) being selected as a “10 Best” Client Satisfaction Award, from the American Institute of Personal Injury Attorneys; (5) being a member of the Million Dollar Advocates Club (fewer than 1% of attorneys nationwide are members); (6) being selected by as one of the 20 best Orlando medical malpractice lawyers; (7) being selected as a Number One Personal Injury, Car Accident & Wrongful Death Attorney By Orlando Style Magazine, based on client and other attorney ratings; (8) being selected as one of the “Three Best Rated” Orlando Accident Attorneys based on handpicked selection; (9) achieving a “superb” perfect “10.0” AVVO rating as an auto accident attorney (10) having many 5-star client reviews all over the Internet, and (11) being named one of Orlando’s “Ten Best” personal injury attorneys by Thumbtack rating system. Before you hire another Florida personal injury lawyer, you owe it to yourself to speak with Ms. Willis. Consultations and representation never cost you a penny until she wins your case.
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  1. Luke Ciciliano  February 3, 2014

    Thanks for sharing Tina,

    It’s good that you mention that profit motivation of the insurance industries, which filters all the way down to the adjusters. Many adjusters are quite good at coming across as friendly and acting as if they are looking out for one who is injured. Unfortunately, in my experience, many people go for the routine.


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