When it comes to insurance companies, it can be said that they have learned how to bend and use the law in their favor to such an extent that they’re protected like dignitaries. Seriously, have you ever wondered why it never ever pays off to sue an insurance company and fight it in court? Simply because the average consumer is both outnumbered and outgunned when it comes to the resources necessary to hold up in the courtroom. When you look at it plain and simple, almost no one can afford to spend that much money and time on challenging a large insurance company, especially if you’re up against one of the largest and, at the same time, most notorious insurance companies in the country like Allstate and State Farm.
So, what are your options? First of all, a personal injury lawyer is probably out of the question, and speaking about them – you can definitely forget about the more renowned and experienced ones; they’re too smart taking on such cases. They’re well aware of the fact that the settlement or award for the plaintiff will be minimal for it to be worthwhile, and not to mention the client’s share of the money. In other words, they know in advance that the client probably won’t be satisfied at all with the payoff that the attorney was able to get for them, just like they know that their law firm won’t make money on the case. Therefore, they perceive such cases as a waste of time (and probably money), which is why it doesn’t pay off to become involved, from their point of view, at least.
When it comes to the 18-month investigation that the CNN conducted on the insurance companies’ latest trend of offering insanely low settlements and charging unbelievably high premiums on the users policies, it has brought forth some information that really are difficult to believe. For example, it was claimed that Allstate employees were, at one point, instructed to offer as low as $50 to accident victims, in an attempt to get rid of claims as quickly as possible. The options for the person (supposedly) insured included suing the company, refusing the offer or accepting it. And to top it all off – you then read about how the insurance companies are complaining that there are too many lawsuits against them! REALLY?!
During the investigation, the CNN investigative team made it its mission to interview victims who experienced this kind of torture on their own skin. One of those victims was Roxanne Martinez from Santa Fe, New Mexico. Sideswiped by a driver whose insurance carrier was Allstate, she suffered back and neck injuries. However, Allstate only offered her $15 Thousand as compensation, and to make things crystal clear – that was three years after the accident! Of course, since her medical bills and lost income were significantly higher than that, she refused the offer and decided to go to court. After extended delays, exactly four years on the anniversary of the accident, she was awarded by the court over $175,000.00 .
Of course, like with any major business, there are no inhibitions, ethical or otherwise, when high profits are involved. The experts say that this kind of strategy was first conceived back in the 1990’s with the purpose of boosting the profits for the insurance companies. In fact, the documents that the CNN managed to get its hands on clearly show that, when it comes to minor crashes and soft-tissue related injuries, the insurance companies challenge the victim’s claims!
This strategy is based on three major D’s: denying a claim, delaying settlement of a claim and defending against the claim in court. Then again, there are always the “experts” who somehow seem to represent the ones with all the power and money, and so they claim that this particular strategy was crucial when it comes to insurance companies getting rid of those victim’s lawyers who make a living off the victims of automobile accidents. Furthermore, one of their arguments was also that the main reason why the lawyers were upset with the companies being rough on the public was because they feared that “the source of easy money was over”. Funny how they forgot to mention that this strategy was hugely unjust to the innocent victims of automobile accidents. In their mind, personal injury lawyers were the only culprits.