How to Handle a Claim Dispute with Your Auto Insurance Company

How to Handle a Claim Dispute with Your Auto Insurance Company

When auto insurance claims are disputed or denied, there are proper steps to take to meet a resolution. The insurance industry is highly regulated and Nevada laws dictate what insurance companies can and cannot do when it comes to settling claims.

Nevada Auto Insurance Laws

Nevada vehicle owners are required to carry auto insurance that provides the minimum coverage for any vehicle operated within the state:

  • $15,000 for injuries to one person in an accident
  • $30,000 per accident where more than one person is hurt, and
  • $10,000 per accident for property damage.

Nevada drivers are required to purchase auto insurance coverage from a licensed state insurance company. Proof of insurance to the Nevada Department of Motor Vehicles is required to register a motor vehicle. Drivers have options to purchase additional insurance coverage.

Handling Disputed Insurance Claims

Nevada operates under the Nevada Fair Trade Practices Act, as well as an Unfair Practices in Settling Claims Statute. Every insurance carrier has a duty to operate under these laws and provide fair insurance practices to policy holders with certain requirements:

  • Accurate Policy Representation – An insurance company must provide accurate representation related to the terms and language in a policy, and cannot make any changes to a policy without prior written notice to the policy holder.
  • Prompt Claims Processing – An insurance company is required to acknowledge and process claims in a prompt manner. Receipt of a claim must be acknowledged in writing. An insurer must act to investigate, process, and settle a claim quickly without intentional delays that may delay payments.
  • Claim Payments – An insurance company cannot withhold payment on a claim that favors one portion of a policy over another in order to force a settlement. For example, a payment cannot be withheld on a collision claim in order to force a settlement on a liability claim.
  • Claim Denials – An insurance company must have good reason to deny or delay a claim. If an insurer denies a claim without good reason, the insured policy holder can file a bad faith insurance claim with an insurance lawyer.

If a dispute arises over an auto insurance claim, the policy holder should write a letter to the insurer with details about the dispute. If there is no response from the insurer, the policy holder can contact the Nevada Division of Insurance to file a complaint, or contact a Nevada insurance lawyer to file legal action.