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How to manage commercial insurance disputes

On Behalf of | May 30, 2024 | Insurance Disputes

Having a comprehensive insurance coverage can be extremely beneficial for New York companies, especially when unexpected issues happen. These may include natural disasters such as fire, flooding and storm damage, as well as property damage, vandalism, or customer injuries that may lead to claims for damages. Accidents within the premises may also require insurance coverage.

When your company works with an insurance company, you expect them to operate in good faith when considering claims. You want to ensure that you are getting the most out of your coverage. Unfortunately, it is also possible for insurers to devalue, deny, or delay claims so they can pay a minimum amount.

Most common commercial insurance claims

A study by The Hartford states that approximately 40% of all businesses are likely to suffer a property or liability loss within the next decade. Based on a five-year analysis of claims, they ranked the most frequent types of claims as follows:

  1. Burglary and theft at 20%
  2. Water and freezing damage, tied with wind and hail damage at 15%
  3. Fire at 1-%
  4. Customer slip-and-fall accidents at 10%

Rounding up the list at 5% and less each are customer injury and damage, product liability, reputational damage and motor vehicle accidents.

Insurer tactics to avoid paying claims

By design, insurance policies are contracts. This means insurers may have accountability if they do not follow the policy to the letter. There are times when they may employ tactics to avoid paying claims in full, or at all. Examples of bad faith insurance include not investigating claims and refusal to pay undisputed claims on time. They may also deny claims unreasonably, lowball settlement offers, or delay over processing claims.

Protecting your business

You may be able to resolve commercial insurance disputes through litigation or negotiation. New York laws allow you to recover actual losses from illegal insurer tactics, however, the state rarely allows punitive damages.

Experienced commercial business lawyers can guide you through the process. Their legal advice may help you deal with bad faith practices and help avoid potential losses in the future.



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