What Is Insurance Bad Faith?

profile photo
By Yosi Yahoudai
Founder and Managing Partner

Working to resolve an insurance claim in the aftermath of a car accident can be extremely stressful.  Emotions and vulnerabilities are high, and insurance companies are often more concerned about protecting their bottom line than your best interest.  If you are one of the many Los Angeles area residents involved in automobile accidents each year, you need to know that you have support when navigating your insurance claim, and it’s not from your insurance agent; Los Angeles car accident attorneys are on your side. 

An insurance company may willingly act in bad faith against its policyholders to protect against financial loss to their business.  In other words, even if you have upheld your contractual obligations to the insurer with paid premiums, your insurance company may still unreasonably withhold processing or payment of your claim.  Increased emotional distress and financial hardship can result. This is not acceptable, and you do have recourse.

Defining Insurance Bad Faith

In its simplest form, insurance bad faith is an attempt by insurance companies to default on promised coverage to the insured. When you enter into an insurance contract, you agree to make premium payments in exchange for coverage against loss or damages. The insurance company in return has an obligation to review, investigate, and respond to a policyholder’s claims in a timely period. Valid claims must be paid per the policy.  

When the insurer knowingly and intentionally fails to act on one or more of these elements, they are operating in bad faith. 

How Do You Know if You’ve Been Victimized by Your Insurance Company?  

If you suspect your insurer to be acting in bad faith, you may be wondering why?  After all, you committed to a contract and upheld your end of the agreement. It is important to remember, however, that although insurance companies promise peace of mind when you sign a contract, their business interests are served by minimizing payouts on claims. This places the insurer in an adversarial position against you, the insured. 

So, how do you resolve whether your insurance company is purposely and unlawfully delaying the processing of your claim, undervaluing compensation, or pressuring you to take a lower than fair settlement? You hire a qualified and experienced team of attorneys.  

Los Angeles Car Accident Attorneys – The Help You Need 

Taking on a corporate insurance entity is a big job, and it takes a team of skilled lawyers.  There are many rules, regulations, and policies that an insurer must follow when reviewing and paying claims. Insurance companies bury details in vast amounts of paperwork and procedures, designed to generate substantial company profits. Sorting through the complexities isn’t a small task.  

After conducting a thorough investigation and review of the evidence in your case, your Los Angeles car accident attorneys and personal injury lawyers will determine if the insurance company has intentionally mishandled your claim by acting in insurance bad faith.  If so, your team of attorneys will advocate for both payment of your claim and potential punitive damage awards. Don’t stand alone against insurance bad faith, call our California car accident attorneys today. 

author photo
About the Author
Yosi Yahoudai is a founder and the managing partner of J&Y. His practice is comprised primarily of cases involving automobile and motorcycle accidents, but he also represents people in premises liability lawsuits, including suits alleging dangerous conditions of public property, third-party criminal conduct, and intentional torts. He also has expertise in cases involving product defects, dog bites, elder abuse, and sexual assault. He earned his Bachelor of Arts from the University of California and is admitted to practice in all California State Courts, and the United States District Court for the Southern District of California. If you have any questions about this article, you can contact Yosi by clicking here.