Insurance Claims in Alabama

What Are Insurance Claims?

Filing an insurance claim in Alabama can be a stressful process. Every policy is different, and insurance companies may not pay you what you deserve. In many cases, hiring an insurance claim lawyer is necessary. This page breaks down the nuances of different types of insurance claims.

What Is a Property Insurance Claim?

A homeowner’s insurance policy is an agreement to protect the home from damage under specific occurrences. When you as a policyholder suffer a loss, you should find a dedicated Alabama property insurance lawyer. Your legal advocate works on your claim to ensure that you receive the benefits necessary to repair or rebuild your Alabama property.

If the insurer denies coverage or delays, policyholders should consult a property insurance attorney about a bad faith claim. If your claim goes to court and you win, you can often recover your court costs, attorney fees, and coverage benefits. There is also the possibility of recovering more money depending on the state laws under which you file your claim.

What Types Of Damage Claims Apply to Property Insurance?

Specific geographic regions impact the design of insurance policies. For example, Florida property insurance policies have more provisions for hurricanes versus earthquakes. 

One of the biggest concerns for Alabama property owners is weather damage. Depending on which part of the state you live in, you may have to deal with hurricanes, tornados, flooding, or all three. Do not assume that your policy covers all types of damages. For example, standard homeowner’s insurance typically excludes flood damage. Fortunately, the University of Alabama publishes an Insurance Guide to help you make informed coverage decisions. In addition, the Alabama Department of Insurance offers a Consumer’s Guide for homeowners. These resources can help you choose the correct coverage for your property, location, and budget.

How to File a Property Insurance Claim in Alabama

After you suffer a loss, you must contact your insurer as soon as possible. Taking this step begins the insurance claim process and gets things moving along. You need to notify your insurance company in writing or over the phone. From there, your insurer appoints a claim representative.

What to Expect Afterwards

The Alabama Administrative Code provides rules that govern many aspects of your insurance claim process. Some deadlines will be dependent on these rules, while others may be set by your policy. Once you file your claim, the insurance company typically has 30 days to accept or deny. However, within the 30 day period, they can extend the deadline by providing a written explanation for why they need more time. Once the insurer accepts your claim, they must pay you within 30 days unless the policy states otherwise.

Insurers are also bound by Alabama’s Policyholder’s Bill of Rights. These rules require your insurance company to offer competitive pricing based on current federal and state laws. In addition, you have the right to choose your own contractor or vendor to make the repairs on your property. Most importantly, you have the right to reject the insurance company’s initial offer. Your Alabama attorney can advise you about your options. These may include litigation, mediation, or a review by the Department of Insurance. For example, Alabama has a specific mediation procedure applicable to damage from hurricanes, tornados, and tropical storms.

What Is an Auto Insurance Claim?

Auto insurance claims involve requesting compensation from an auto insurer after an accident. Car accidents are incredibly stressful, especially if there are uncooperative responsible parties. However, your insurer’s job is to work on your behalf to secure compensation for repairs, injuries and other expenses.

What Do You Do After a Car Accident?

Reporting an Alabama car accident is a two-part process. First, you should file a police report. In fact, according to Alabama Legal Help, this step is mandatory if there are injuries or more than $250 in damages. If you call 911 from the scene, the police will respond. Alternatively, you can file a non-emergency report afterwards. Be sure to file with the law enforcement agency that covers the location of the accident.

Your next step is to file an insurance claim. If you were at fault, you must report the accident to your own insurance company. However, the Alabama Department of Insurance advises that you have two options if the other driver was at fault. You can file the claim directly with the other driver’s insurance company. Alternatively, you can file with your insurance company and let them recoup the costs from the other driver’s insurance. If the fault for the accident is shared or in dispute, you may need to go to court to determine who pays for the damages.

Auto Claims Adjuster

Your auto insurance company will assign a claims adjuster to your claim report. Your adjuster acts as your representation in any mediation between you and all other involved parties. This insurance representative bears responsibility for investigating the claim and seeing that you receive compensation for any repairs or injuries.

Whether there are repair claims, personal injury claims, or you are dealing with someone who does not have insurance, your auto insurance adjuster should see you through the process. Your claims adjuster may recommend a garage to handle your vehicle repairs. They may also make arrangements for a rental vehicle if required. The most important thing to note is that your auto claim adjuster is your primary point of contact regarding the status of your claim in Alabama.

Health Insurance Claims

Alabama policyholders file health insurance claims when they seek reimbursement for medical services or treatments. When you obtain a medical service from a provider, your health insurance carrier should be notified directly. If there are any discrepancies in your claim, consider hiring a health insurance claim specialist attorney.

How Do You File a Health Claim in Alabama?

There are two ways to file a health insurance claim on your behalf. The first is the medical facility notifies your insurer for you. You may be able to walk out of the facility without spending anything, but that depends on your policy. The other way is to file a health insurance claim yourself. Taking this route can occur when a health provider you use is not in your provider network. The facility may still file the claim on your behalf, but you may need to file it yourself.

Regardless of whether you submit the claim yourself, or it comes directly from your healthcare provider, the insurance company must respond promptly. Under Alabama law, the deadline depends on the transmission method. For claims submitted electronically, the insurance company must respond within 30 days. However, if the claim is on paper, they have 45 days to respond. Within these timelines, the insurance company must accept the claim or provide a reason for denial. In many cases, the denial will simply be a request for additional information. In this situation, the company gets another 21 days once they receive the data. If the insurance company denies your claim, an Alabama attorney can best help you dispute their decision.

Work with an Experienced Local Insurance Lawyer in Alabama

If your health insurance provider refuses to honor a claim, seek out a qualified Alabama insurance claim attorney’s help. An insurance claim attorney can help if you have been improperly denied coverage or sent a bill for a service you never received. We can even help you connect with an attorney across Alabama state lines.

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