Some insurance companies resort to insanely unfair tactics just for the sake of their bottom lines. But the ugliest part is that they decide to pull the rug out from under you when you need their support the most. So, it is best to know their most common cheap shots, before life decides to throw you a curveball. Here are some of the tactics in no particular order.
Using Confusing Terms
Insurance companies want you to clearly know your obligations to them, but they are not as eager for you to learn what their obligations toward you really are. That’s why they might try to confuse you by using either legalese in the documents you need to sign or the good ol’ fine print no one really bothers to decipher. If an insurance contract seems difficult to understand, it doesn’t mean that you have reading comprehension issues. It was probably deliberately written that way for you not to fully understand your insurance coverage and claim what’s rightfully yours.
Resorting to Delay Tactics
This is one of the most common strategies insurance companies nationwide use to get rid of you and not pay you a dime. They might let the insurance claim process drag out for months if not years, delay reaching a settlement when time is of the essence for you, or even wait for you to die if they know that you won’t make it long enough to sue them, due to injury or life-threating illness. In general, the end goal of this highly effective tactic is to push you into giving up on the claim. And many policyholders give up.
Holding Back Critical Info from You
Some insurers might purposely fail to notify you on important matters in the hopes of not having to pay your claim in full or not paying it at all. For instance, an insurance company might not inform you on an important deadline after which you can no longer file a claim or they might not tell you that your insurance policy covers some extras like lost wages in a car accident, and so on. Read carefully the fine print in your insurance contract and don’t let them get away with it. In time of need, even consult with a professional.
Here’s another cheap but very common strategy insurance companies love: devaluing claims. Insurers tend to play this card the most when expensive medical bills are at stake. They may blame you that you took too long to recover from an injury or illness or that you should have used less pricy treatments. They may even deny the severity of your injuries and urge you to stop a costly treatment threatening you that they won’t be covering for future expenses.
Don’t fall for these tactics as they are just an age-old means of intimidation and harassment. Ask an experienced personal injury attorney to back you up if things reach this point. They’ll back down eventually.
Tricking You into Taking a Quick Settlement
This is a less obvious tactic insurers use in order to pay you (next to) nothing. After filing a claim, they may call you back and offer you quick money for the damages to call it a day. To gain your trust, they may even cover the cost of a totaled car for more than its worth. This way you’ll falsely believe they would be fair about your medical bills as well and take the quick settlement they’ve been nagging you about. But that settlement may deprive you of tens of thousands of dollars you are entitled to receive under the insurance policy.
Injury attorneys urge policyholders not to sign any document through which you may either devalue your claim or give up your right to receive further payments. Signing a release of all claims form, which insurance companies hand out like candy after a quick settlement, means that you give up your right to pursue your personal injury claim and get coverage for all damages. A release of all claims is very hard to undo in a court of law even by an experienced attorney.