Did you experience bad faith insurance and have questions about life after a bad faith insurance claim? Give our Florida attorney a call now.
Statue of Limitations
If you have gone to trial, gotten a verdict, and the verdict is in excess of the policy limits, which provides a possibility for there being a bad faith case. The lawyer they had for whatever reason is not willing or able to move forward on that part of the case. Typically, the case has been tried years earlier.
There is a statute of limitation. It’s five years. It’s more than the average four years, but it’s five years from the date that you get the verdict or the judgment. You’ve got time, but time is allusive, as we all know.
The best way to illustrate that is to give an example. We had a case once where a man got hurt, hurt badly. We sued his insurance company. They would not settle the case for the policy. His injuries were large.
We went to trial. We obtained a verdict that fairly outlined his damages, which was far in excess of the policy limits. Once that verdict was turned into a judgment and the case was over, we turned around, and we sued the insurance company again for the balance over and above the insurance policy limits. We were successful in that case, as well.
Traditionally, that’s the scenario that we have. Now, there are other ins and outs to bad faith. There are complexities to it. What classically we see in damages that you can get in a bad faith case is the amount over and above the policy limits that the insurance company should have paid in the first place to settle the case, but they refused to do so. They’re on the hook for the entire amount of the damages in the first trial.
Differences Between First and Third-Party Bad Faith Claims
People often ask us about bad faith claims and first-party or third-party bad faith claims. It’s a good question because insurance company behavior comes up in both settings. A first-party bad faith claim is a claim against your own insurance company where they didn’t provide benefits for you under circumstances where they should have.
A third-party bad faith claim is a scenario where, for example, you have been hurt in an automobile accident. You sue the at-fault driver. Their insurance company will not settle the case when they should have. You go to trial. You get a fair verdict for the full measure of your injuries and it is way over and above the policy limits of that insurance company.
In Florida, there has always been the ability to have the third-party case, but there was no such thing as first-party bad faith where your own insurance company’s behavior can be brought to task until rather recently. It’s created by statute where you go through some hoops to establish your claim under a statute that’s on the books in the state of Florida. If you satisfy that, then you can prosecute your bad faith claim against your own insurance company. That’s basically the differences, but in essence you’re calling to task the behavior of the insurance company for not dealing fairly with you when under all the circumstances they should have and could have.
Did you or a loved one experience bad faith insurance in Florida and have questions about life after a bad faith insurance claim? Contact an experienced Nassau County bad faith insurance lawyer at Paul Boone Law today for a free consultation and case evaluation.
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