car insurance claim stamped deniedCar accident claims are denied for a variety of reasons, even when the claim is valid. If your auto insurance claim was denied by the insurance company, take the time to carefully review the reasons given in the denial letter. You should also review your auto insurance policy. Sometimes an insurance company will deny a car insurance claim by mistake, or there is not sufficient evidence to substantiate the denial. You can dispute the car insurance claim if you feel that the denial was wrong. Virginia has laws that provide you with certain legal rights, and your insurance company owes you a duty to fairly settle your car accident insurance claim in good faith.

Why Your Claim Was Denied

Insurance adjusters will look for any tiny irregularity or missed deadline to deny a claim on a policy. Some of the most commonly cited reasons for denial include the following:

  • Your insurance coverage may not be adequate for the claim you filed. For example, if you only had liability coverage, your claim for vehicle damage will be denied.
  • Your vehicle damage exceeds the limits of your coverage.
  • The policy does not include you. This scenario frequently happens in the case of teen drivers. Many parents neglect to add the teen to the policy, and if that teen driver is in an accident, the claim may be denied.
  • Your claim was for an uninsured motorist, but the insurer discovers that the other driver had auto insurance at the time of the accident.
  • The insurance policy has lapsed due to non-payment.
  • You did not switch the insurance to your new car when you purchased it.

Disputing a Denied Car Insurance Claim

You have the right to dispute the car accident denial. To initiate the appeal, write a letter to the insurance company and indicate where you believe a mistake was made.  Include supporting documentation with your letter. If the insurance company is uncooperative, you can make an appeal with the Virginia Commissioner of Insurance

If you are still unsatisfied with the results of the appeal, you should contact an experienced Virginia car insurance claims attorney who can help you work with the insurance company.  A car insurance claims lawyer will be able to discuss the error with your insurance company and if necessary, file a lawsuit on your behalf.  It is possible to sue the insurer for bad faith, breach of contract, or other violations of Virginia law.

Andrew Thomas
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Civil litigation attorney in Virginia and is AV Rated by Martindale-Hubbell.

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