Insurance Claims in Washington

What Are Insurance Claims?

Filing an insurance claim in Washington 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 Washington property insurance lawyer. Your legal advocate works on your claim to ensure that you receive the benefits necessary to repair or rebuild your Washington 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. 

According to My Northwest, the most common type of natural disaster in Washington is wildfires. Unfortunately, this risk is increasing as our climate changes. Most homeowners policies will cover fire damage, regardless of the cause. However, Washington residents should be aware that some other types of damage may need a special policy. For example, a standard policy will not cover damage from earthquakes, volcanoes, or floods.

How to File a Property Insurance Claim in Washington

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

Once you contact your insurance company about a loss, they will begin determining the coverage amount. According to the Washington Insurance Commissioner, the insurer will typically send an adjuster to your property to survey the damage. In most cases, they have 30 days to complete their investigation. You also have the option of hiring your own adjuster.

Once the investigation is complete, the insurance company will make a settlement offer. Keep in mind that you do not have to accept this offer if you think it is incorrect. Some insurers will negotiate or have an internal appeal process. You can also file a consumer complaint with the Office of the Insurance Commissioner. In addition, if your insurer denies or undervalues your claim unfairly, you may have grounds for a lawsuit.

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?

A police report is mandatory for most car accidents in Washington. The only exception is for accidents with no injuries and less than $1,000 in damages. The Washington State Patrol will accept reports online within 4 days of the accident. However, if the police respond to the scene, they will typically file the report, relieving you of this responsibility.

You should also contact your insurance company as soon as possible. According to wallethub, Washington is a fault state. This means that the at-fault driver’s insurance will pay for the damages. However, Washington also allows drivers to add no-fault Personal Injury Protection to their insurance policy. This can speed up coverage of your medical expenses while the determination of fault is made.

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 Washington.

Health Insurance Claims

Washington 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 Washington?

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.

Health insurance companies can deny your claim for a variety of reasons. According to the Washington State Insurance Commissioner, some of the most common are:

  • A treatment is not medically necessary
  • The treatment is experimental
  • The provider is out of network
  • Policy was canceled for non-payment

Fortunately, your insurance company must have an appeals process in place. In some cases, a letter from your doctor may be enough to reverse the denial. If this process is unsuccessful, you may want to file a complaint or request an external review.

Work with an Experienced Local Insurance Lawyer in Washington

If your health insurance provider refuses to honor a claim, seek out a qualified Washington 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 Washington state lines.

Submit a request online or call us today at (866) 345-6784 to get in touch with an experienced lawyer in your area!

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