Intimidation Tactics by Insurance Companies are Unethical & Illegal
People throughout Oklahoma experience accidental injury and property loss on a daily basis. An accident is defined as an undesirable and unfortunate happening that occurs unintentionally usually resulting in harm, injury, damage or loss. Although no one anticipates an accident, many trust that when it happens their insurance company will provide the security and protection promised by their insurance policy. Sadly, many consumers find that their claims are met by insurance intimidation tactics and delay. An Oklahoma insurance company that engages in ploys designed to intimidate an insured into accepting less than the value of his or her claim violates the insurance provider’s obligation of good faith and fair dealing toward policyholders. The Bennett & David L. Smith Law Firms are NOT intimidated by insurance companies and will fight aggressively for your rights. Don’t let an insurer intimidate you out of the compensation you deserve. Schedule a free consultation with us today.
If your insurance company engages in unethical conduct designed to intimidate you into accepting less than the value of your claim,you may be able to file a lawsuit for insurance bad faith and even seek punitive damages. Our Oklahoma insurance bad faith attorneys represent those who are victimized by the unethical practice of insurance companies throughout Oklahoma. We have obtained millions of dollars in insurance bad faith lawsuit verdicts and settlements on behalf of Oklahoma residents who have been the victim of unethical practices by their insurance company. We routinely receive complaints of acts of intimidation by insurance companies toward policyholders and have provided an overview of some of these practices below.
- Unsubstantiated Fraud Allegations: Many insurance providers will allege that their policyholder is engaged in fraud by inflating the value of items in their claim, fabricating events resulting in loss or claiming loss of items that do not exist or were not lost or damaged. Sometimes these allegations will be loosely based on mistakes on a proof of loss form or be completely without any factual support. The objective is to intimidate a policyholder into accepting a lowball offer because of fears that the insured will face potential civil or criminal liability as well as having his or her claim completely denied.
- False Allegations of Arson: A particularly offensive and surprisingly common practice is to allege arson when there is absolutely no evidence to support such a claim. Even though the allegations are completely unfounded the mere specter of criminal prosecution may intimidate a policyholder into quietly settling for far less than the policyholder’s actual loss.
- Using Harassing, Demeaning or Intrusive Investigative Methods: These may include abusive “interrogation-like” questioning, intrusive personal or video surveillance and embarrassing interviews of employers, neighbors and friend implying misconduct by the policyholder.
- Abusing or Misusing the Judicial Process: An insurance policy may use litigation or engage in tactics in pending litigation to intimidate an insured into settling or abandoning a claim.
- Implying Fictional Criminal Investigations: Under some circumstances, an insurance provider may suggest that a delay in processing a claim is the result of some vague and unspecified criminal investigation regarding the claim or underlying incident that caused the loss or injury. An ongoing criminal investigation may be implied even where no such investigation has been initiated. This is designed to instill fear in the policyholder regarding possible criminal liability.
If your insurance company has engaged in any of these abusive and intimidating practices, it may have violated its obligation to handle a policyholder’s claim in good faith. Aggressive and hostile ploys designed to intimidate a policyholder into abandoning a claim or accepting less than the value of the claim may justify imposing substantial punitive damages. Our Oklahoma insurance bad faith attorneys have helped many victims of abusive and intimidating practices hold their insurance accompany accountable for unethical practices like these. If you have been the victim of unethical and intimidating practices by your insurance company, you may be able to file a lawsuit for insurance bad faith to obtain the full value of your claim and even punitive damages.
Feel free to schedule a free consultation online or call The Bennett & David L. Smith Law Firms at 405.272.0303 or 405.528.5520 to discuss your legal options with an experienced Oklahoma City lawyer today. No Recovery, No Fee! We will meet with you face to face and can handle cases anywhere in Oklahoma. We can even come to you!