Beneficiaries that suffer a death benefits claim denial after the insured passes away may feel even more disheartened if this occurs while using a life insurance claims attorney. While this may make one believe there is not any available recourse and that the policy will remain unpaid, many times, a second opinion can uncover a better strategy, which leads to the overturning of the denial.
It is often a matter of legal argumentation that is incorrect or inexperience with the insurer issuing the denial. Once a carrier refuses to pay, the appeals process and possible future lawsuit begin to take shape, making it critical to find counsel that can create a successful strategy for your case.
All too often, in cases where life insurance companies deny a legitimate claim, there are actions and arguments by the claimant or their attorney that backfires the process. This is true in cases where the initial denial occurs or later when suing the insurance company for a due payout. Sometimes these errors occur because your legal counsel doesn't regularly practice in this field of law. At the same time, other instances have to do with incorrectly drawn inferences from information related to the claim.
Creating a recovery strategy that results in the demand for policy proceeds, which brings the expected payout after a denial, is crucial in these legitimate claims. A life insurance lawyer must avoid giving any room for the insurer to avoid their contractual obligations to the beneficiary represented. Failing to do so would most certainly guarantee a second denial.
One element that should be part of any strategy to overturn a claim denial involves establishing a life insurance company's legal obligation to pay. Instead of only presenting an argumentation on why the carrier is wrong in their refusal to pay, demonstrating the circumstances that make them liable is even more critical. This is an essential step to take because, even though the plan administrator is well aware of this fact, they won't do it automatically.
The most important focus in a death benefits claim for life insurance companies is their bottom line. These organizations are businesses and will take steps to minimize payouts whenever possible. Designated beneficiaries who do not have an effective or experienced attorney representing their case can end up with a denial, even when their claim is legitimate and didn’t warrant such action.
If you have already hired a life insurance claims attorney, but still received a denial, re-evaluate your choice and consider some of the characteristics below when getting a second opinion:
Possesses Proven Experience in This Field
By far, this attribute is the single-most-important trait to look for when evaluating attorneys who are currently or will be representing your life insurance denial case. Having the breadth of knowledge to avoid making critical mistakes regarding key dates that insurers use to justify denying a payout or staying ahead of bad faith practices like delayed decision-making is vital in a competent lawyer in this field. Finding legal counsel that is well-versed in the underhanded tactics insurance companies will use to wear down a claimant is another key benefit of hiring a vetted claims attorney.
Has a Multi-faceted Approach to Life Insurance Claim Cases
Going to court will cost more in time, money, and paperwork. Hiring an insurance lawyer with additional skills in mediation and arbitration can prove cost-effective and worthwhile to help reduce your case's cost. An experienced attorney will be able to help narrow down a timeframe for achieving a settlement and what strategy will bring the results you need. Skillful lawyers will also share all the options available based on the facts of your case, as well as the potential consequences, so you are fully aware of any risks when making a decision that will affect your case.
Has Extensive Negotiating Skills
Another critical skill any life insurance attorney should bring their clients is negotiating skills. Dealing with the insurance company is all about the negotiation of facts, timelines, and compensation. Lawyers in this field will know how to overturn your denial and will ensure that all supporting documentation is available to facilitate a payout from the life insurance company.
Do not let a claim denial convince you there is not a case. Or worse, that because your attorney did not succeed, that you should instead try to appeal on your own. Going it alone jeopardizes future options for recovery because of complicated deadlines at the state and federal level, as well as complex procedural actions that have no room for mistakes. Insurance companies deny perfectly legitimate claims all the time, and sometimes, choosing a different legal counsel to handle your death benefits denial is the best solution.
Are you experiencing a slow response from the life insurance company regarding your claim? Do you already have an attorney, but your claim got denied? Don’t let these situations convince you that your death benefits are lost. Without significant experience, a talented lawyer can make simple mistakes that can lead to a refusal of payment.
If you haven't yet filed a lawsuit, but had your claim for benefits denied, it may be time to sit down with legal counsel that practices exclusively in life insurance denial cases. During the consultation, you can analyze the current strategy behind your case and if it is appropriately supported or if the argumentation is not correct. You may also decide to switch attorneys and proceed with a lawsuit against the insured's policy service provider if your new counsel deems your claim to be valid. It is also possible that this second opinion will point out instances of bad faith practice that your original life insurance claims lawyer overlooked, which could increase your recovered benefit significantly.