Dealing with automobile insurance carriers can be notoriously challenging. This is particularly frustrating when you are trying to recover compensation for your injuries, property damage expenses, and pain and suffering losses after a crash caused by another driver. Here, we want to discuss what steps you should take if your New Mexico car insurance claim is denied by the insurance carrier.
Why Would a Car Insurance Claim Get Denied?
In general, insurance carriers will honor their end of a contract, but that does not mean that a denial will not occur with your claim. There are various reasons why insurers reject claims. Some of these reasons are valid, but denials may be a way for the insurance carrier to try to get out from paying their obligation.
- The driver has not paid their monthly premiums
- The insurance carrier does not cover the types of damages that were submitted
- An individual committed fraud or provided false information
- The vehicle accident was not reported on time
- The individual involved in the crash was an excluded driver
- There are insufficient coverage or policy limits
- The individual did not seek immediate medical care
- The individual broke the law when causing the accident (i.e. DUI)
Steps to Take if Your Claim is Denied
Even though the above list may seem like valid reasons for an insurance carrier to deny a claim, not all denials will be legitimate. The reality is that insurance carriers often deny claims that are completely valid. There are ways to fight back if an insurance claim is denied, and we encourage individuals to follow these steps:
- Request a letter from the insurance carrier that indicates why the claim was denied. If the insurance carrier denied the claim for unfair or unlawful reasons, this letter could serve as evidence for a bad-faith lawsuit.
- If you believe that the insurance carrier made a mistake, you have to gather as much evidence as possible to back up your claim. You need to be prepared to send photos from the scene of the accident, provide eyewitness names and contact information, and have a police report that backs up your reasoning.
- File a claim with the New Mexico Superintendent of Insurance. This office is highly digitized, and complaints against insurance carriers and claims adjusters can be submitted electronically through their website. The online form will allow you to provide various types of information about the complaint, including the insurance company name, the people involved, your policy number, the claim number, when the incident occurred, the total amount of the dispute, as well as a description of the incident and complaint.
- Consider working with an attorney for help with your claim. If your insurance claim has been denied, an attorney may be able to help you conduct a more thorough investigation into the initial incident and provide additional evidence to the insurance carrier that could reverse their decision. Additionally, if the insurance carrier has operated in bad faith, an attorney will be able to examine the claim, prove that this is the case, and help individuals move forward with their original insurance claim as well as the bad faith claim against the insurance carrier.
An insurance claim denial is not the end of the road. This just means that you need to find a car accident attorney to help you handle every aspect of your claim. There is no harm in seeking a free consultation related to your claim move forward.