Skilled Bad Faith Insurance Lawyers Serving The State of Arizona
A bad faith delay or denial of your long-term disability insurance policy can have disastrous knock-on effects in your life.
Sadly, the insurance corporations providing this coverage in Arizona frequently do all they can to avoid paying out on valid claims. They’re experts when it comes to the loopholes and technicalities in the law, and like to exploit whatever opportunity they can to save money in this way.
Hiring a top-class Arizona insurance bad faith lawyer is the only way to protect your interests if your insurance company tries to wrongfully delay or deny your long-term disability insurance claim.
Why Your Long-Term Disability Insurance Claim Was Denied
Insurers can reject or delay claims for a host of reasons. Some common justifications for denials include:
- Issues with evidence: Your insurance company may assert that the medical, financial, or vocational reports relating to your claim do not prove you meet the definition of disability set out in your policy.
- Pre-existing condition: If there is a possibility your disabling symptoms may have arisen from a condition you had before you had long-term disability insurance coverage, your insurer may deny your claim.
- Technicalities: Insurers often refuse to pay out on claims if claimants miss a filing deadline, return incomplete documentation, or make another technical mistake. Claim filing procedures on long-term disability insurance policies can be highly complex, increasing the risk of something like this happening and the policyholder making a fatal claim mistake.
- Suspicion of fraud: If your insurer suspects you may be submitting a fraudulent claim, it will refuse to pay you monthly benefits pending the completion of an assessment of your case.
Remember, your disability insurance company has a financial incentive not to pay out on your claim. Bad faith claim denials are frequent, but you’ll need the help of an expert Arizona insurance bad faith attorney to prove there has been a wrongful delay or unreasonable conduct by an insurer in your case.
When Do You Become Entitled to Long-Term Disability Insurance Benefits in Arizona?
There are a number of conditions you must satisfy in order for your Arizona long-term disability insurance claim to be successful, namely:
- Your physician must assess your condition and confirm that it rises to the level of a disability, as the term is defined by your policy. If yours is an “any occupation” policy, you will have to prove your symptoms and problems are preventing you from doing the essential duties associated with any occupation for which you are trained, educated, or suited by experience. If you have an “own occupation” policy, on the other hand, you will be considered disabled once you can no longer carry out the tasks associated with the role you had at the onset of your claim.
- Your physician must administer the most suitable course of treatment for your condition.
- The elimination period (also known as awaiting period) on your policy must have elapsed. This is the length of time between the onset of your disability and the date on which your insurer must start paying monthly benefits. These periods vary widely from one policy to the next, so it’s a good idea to research your own policy document (ideally with the assistance of your long-term disability insurance attorney) to see what period will apply in your case.
What Are the Elements of Insurance Bad Faith in Arizona?
Under Arizona law, companies offering any kind of insurance coverage are expected to act in good faith. Section 20-461 of the Arizona Revised Statutes sets out a number of specific obligations insurance companies face regarding acting in good faith. For example, an insurer cannot:
- Misrepresent key facts or policy provisions in relation to a claim.
- Fail to respond to claims in a reasonable and prompt fashion.
- Refuse to pay out on claims without first conducting a thorough investigation of the case at hand.
- Force claimants into litigation battles by offering insufficient settlement amounts during the claims process.
It’s important to realize that each case is different; as a policyholder, it will likely be impossible for you to establish that an act in bad faith has occurred without the assistance of a specialist disability insurance lawyer.
Arizona Disability Statistics
According to statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), there are just under 1.4 million adult residents of Arizona living with a disability of some kind. This number equates to 24% of the state’s population, or just under one in four people.
Illnesses and injuries related to mobility are the most common disabling conditions in Arizona, affecting 11% of the adult population. Cognitive disabilities are next, affecting 10% of state residents, with independent living (6%), hearing (6%), vision (5%), and self-care (3%) following behind.
How an Arizona Disability Insurance Bad Faith Lawyer Can Help You
If you think you’ve fallen victim to bad faith insurance practices in the state of Arizona, know that you’re not alone. A top-class Arizona insurance bad-faith lawyer will help you understand the reasons for the wrongful delay or denial of your claim and plan your next move.
Contact DarrasLaw today to schedule a free initial case consultation, including a free policy analysis, claim assistance, or help with your appeal.