Insurance Companies' Failure to Defend Policyholders
Under a liability insurance policy, the insurer has two major duties to its policyholders. The insurance company must indemnify, or pay valid claims for covered losses. It must also provide, at its own expense, a legal defense for policyholders who are sued by a third party.
When You Need It Most
The insurance law attorneys of Ver Ploeg & Lumpkin, P.A., regularly represent clients in cases involving an insurance company's failure to defend the policyholder against lawsuits. Failure to defend can leave the policyholder exposed to enormous financial liability. Mitigating that risk is the reason we purchase liability policies like homeowners insurance or commercial general liability insurance. They provide protection when we need it most.
A prompt response is essential. If someone was injured on your property and sues, you generally have only 20 days in which to file a response to the complaint. If the insurance company delays the decision about whether to defend you, it leaves you exposed to significant risk. Contact us immediately to protect your legal rights.
We encourage the insurance company to announce promptly whether it intends to provide a defense. If the insurer failed to defend you when it should have, we may pursue punitive damages against it in an insurance bad faith claim.
Our Miami lawyers will resolve failure to defend cases for individual homeowners as well as for businesses and corporations that have been sued because of, for example, a defective product.
The Duty to Defend
The threshold for the insurance company's duty to defend a policyholder is lower than its duty to reimburse you for covered losses. If there is a potential for coverage on the basis of the complaint, the insurance company must defend the policyholder. In addition, if an insurance company exposes its policyholder to an excess judgment above the policy limits, it can be sued for acting in bad faith.
Contact Us for Orlando Liability Insurance Policy Lawyers
To arrange a consultation to discuss your insurance coverage dispute, please contact us by e-mail or call 305-577-3996. From offices in Miami and Orlando, our lawyers represent clients from throughout Florida and across the nation.