Reasons Why Car Accident Claims Are Denied
There are a number of reasons why insurance companies in Alabama deny car accident claims. Some of the reasons include contributory negligence, guest passenger statute, expired insurance, no uninsured motorist coverage, excluded driver or the adjuster denies liability for some reasonable or unreasonable reason. Regardless of the reason that your claim is denied, make sure that you receive an explanation from the adjuster in writing. If you later learn your own insurance adjuster’s denial was in bad faith, you may be able to sue your insurance company in your case.
If you’re involved in a auto accident in Alabama, you need to understand what contributory negligence means. This means that if you are at fault at all in an accident, you cannot recover anything from the other party. Alabama is one of only a handful of states who still has this archaic law. Insurance company adjusters constantly claim that the other driver involved with their insured was at least 1 percent at fault. Insurance companies deny claims all the time based on the 1 percent rule. Just because insurance companies adjusters say you are 1 percent at fault, does not mean its true. And it definitely does not mean a jury will agree with the insurance companies decision. Never take the word of an insurance adjuster who says you contributed to your accident case. Hire an attorney.
Expired Insurance and Excluded Drivers
There are thousands of drivers every day in Alabama that let their insurance policies expire for some reason. Some people just don’t have the money to pay for auto insurance. Others have to make the decision of whether to buy food, medicine or pay for insurance. Sadly, there are a lot of drivers in Decatur and Huntsville, Alabama who are driving without insurance. While its illegal to drive without insurance coverage, people do it all the time. After an accident, it is not unusual to receive a letter or phone call from the the insurance company adjuster telling you the policy was canceled. Drivers often lie to the police officer investigating the accident so that they don’t get a ticket for driving without insurance coverage. No matter what the reason, if the at fault driver has no insurance, the chances of you recovering from them or their insurance company is unlikely. Although you could recover for your injuries, but not property, from your own uninsured motorist coverage.
Insurance companies also deny claims if the person at fault has been excluded from driving the vehicle that caused the accident. When an insurance companies finds that a driver is too risky to insure, they exclude them from driving the motor vehicles they insure. They also deny claims if the vehicle was stolen by the excluded driver or was stolen by someone else.
Guest Passenger Statute
Did you known that Alabama has a guest passenger statute? Did you know that it prevents passengers from recovering against the driver of the car they are in if they are at fault for the accident. You can only recover if the driver is wanton. Speeding is not enough to prove wantonness. You usually have to prove that the driver was drunk, under the influence of drugs or some other type of wantonness. Tennessee does not have a guest passenger statute.
Did you know that the minimum amount of auto insurance you can purchase in Alabama is only $25,000.00. A very small accident can easily be valued at more than $25,000.00. If your damages exceed the policy limits carried by the at-fault driver, the adjuster may offer their limits or deny the claim due to “insufficient coverage.” Insufficient coverage means the at-fault driver doesn’t have enough insurance to cover all of the damages of the injured parties.
Contact an Experienced Motor Vehicle Attorney Today!
If you have been in an auto accident in Decatur of Huntsville, Alabama and your claim has been denied, you need an attorney. Our Decatur and Huntsville car accident lawyers are here to help. The Alabama auto accident attorneys at Ferguson and Ferguson can help. Make an appointment with us at our Decatur or Huntsville location. We offer free consultations, and you owe us nothing if you don’t recover.
We serve clients throughout Alabama including those in the following areas:
Huntsville, Decatur, Athens, Moulton, Cullman, Florence, Fort Payne, Scottsboro, Guntersville, Albertville, Boaz and Birmingham.
The Law Offices of Ferguson & Ferguson represents accident victims injured in various types of accidents including:
Distracted Driving Accidents
Drunk Driving Accidents
T-Bone Car Accidents
Rear-end Car Accidents
Left Turn Accidents
Construction Zone Accidents
Slip and Fall Accidents