I hate when insurers are accused of acting in “bad faith.” Most people who say that have no idea what they are saying or writing. They are just upset with the results of an insurer investigation. It is the failure to act in the utmost of good faith and fair dealing which historically subjects an insurer to extra-contractual damages. It does not mean that the insurer was “evil” or “bad.”  The law did a disservice to consumers when it called these actions “bad faith” causes of action. 

Continue Reading Does the Lack of Good Faith Mean the Insurer Was Bad and With Evil Intent? Indiana Case Suggests It Does 

An insurer in Arkansas who wrongfully denies a property insurance claim and fails to act in good faith can be subject to a bad faith lawsuit. An article in the Arkansas Law Review, A Survey of Bad Faith Insurance Tort Cases in Arkansas,1 noted the Arkansas first-party bad faith law:

Continue Reading Arkansas Allows Bad Faith Claims For Wrongful Denial of A Property Insurance Claim

A number of attorneys, public adjusters, and roofers have been asking me questions about State Farm claims practice related to hail damage claims. Many insurers are not willing to fully explain to their customers how they instruct adjusters to handle claims—unlike the federal government, which published a manual regarding national flood insurance adjustments and invites the public to its claims certification training. As a result, it is often difficult to figure out what criteria an insurer uses to determine what is covered and what is owed. This is one problem regarding State Farm hail damage claims. 

Continue Reading Learning How State Farm Evaluates Hail Damage Claims

Jon Bukowski was trying to explain to me how he, Larry Bache, and Mike Duffy won a bad faith jury trial verdict against GuideOne Mutual Insurance Company.1 He told me that it was because of Mike Duffy’s trial skills and “Eeny, meeny, miny, moe.” The Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the findings of bad faith in an opinion filed yesterday.
Continue Reading “Eeny, Meeny, Miny, Moe”—Bad Faith Trial Victory Upheld

Practicing solely in the field of first-party claims and studying, debating, and analyzing with others within Merlin Law Group raises the bar and makes our law firm members better at what we do. We also study other cases to learn winning techniques and what to avoid. Bad faith cases are never easy. But I was somewhat surprised while studying a recent Pennsylvania court’s decision to go out of its way to find delay and underestimating “reasonable.”1 I wonder if the court would have ruled the same way if an insurer stopped his paycheck and prevented him from making rulings for 17 months?
Continue Reading Pennsylvania Bad Faith Law and Learning From Others Cases

Florida does not recognize a first-party bad faith cause of action at common law. Instead, it has a statutory scheme where a formal notice (CRN) must be sent that provides the specific statutory provisions which are violated, the relevant policy language relevant to violations, and the facts giving rise to the violations. Then, the insurance company gets 60 days to cure the defects of its actions.
Continue Reading Florida’s Bad Faith Scheme Requires a 60 Day Notice Including Facts