How Will Insurance Policy Limits Affect My Injury Claim? | Boulder Injury Lawyers
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Insurance companies are in the business of assuming responsibility for a range of accidents, including automobile collisions, slip and fall injuries, and dog bite cases, among others.
After being injured in an accident, you may have to deal with an insurance company. The typical process between the insurance company and an injured claimant consists of filing a claim and receiving compensation through some sort of claim settlement process.
However, the amount an insurance company is willing to pay out on a claim is greatly affected by an insured’s policy limits. It is therefore very important to familiarize yourself with what policy limits are, how they work, and what they ultimately mean to your claim settlement process.
If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident, or if you would like to learn more about insurance policy limits, call Zinda Law Group at (800) 863-5312 for a 100% free case evaluation with our Boulder injury attorneys.
What Are Policy Limits?
When an individual purchases liability insurance from an insurance company, the insurance policy will contain policy limits. These policy limits correspond to the maximum dollar amount that the insurance company is responsible for paying in case an accident occurs.
Take an auto insurance policy, for example. If the limits on the auto policy are $25,000, then that is the maximum amount that the insurance company is responsible for paying following an automobile accident. If there is an accident that results in damages totaling $30,000, the remaining $5,000 will not be paid out by the insurer because the policy limit has been exceeded.
The actual policy limit figures are determined and established by several factors. State and federal laws can mandate a certain minimum amount, for example. How much an insured is willing to pay in monthly premiums will also affect the amount of a policy’s limits.
How Do Policy Limits Affect Injury Claims?
As you can tell from the example above, policy limits play a very important role in determining the compensation a person receives after filing an injury claim. In the example above, the claimant was involved in an accident that led to a total amount of $30,000 in damages. However, because the applicable policy limits were set at $25,000, the claimant is left with an additional $5,000 unpaid.
Policy limits are in place for both out-of-court settlements between a claimant and an insurance company and in-court jury verdicts or judge’s awards. As a result, it is often the case that a claimant receives less from the insurance company than what the settlement or award reflects.
Collecting the Excess Damages
Now that you are aware of how policy limits can affect the amount of compensation paid by an insurance company following an injury claim, it is time to consider how excess damages can be collected.
Suing Multiple Defendants
In some cases, there may be more than one at-fault party. If so, the multiple defendants can be held to be jointly responsible for any damages incurred. Although the policy limits of one defendant alone may be insufficient to cover your total damages, it is possible that your total damages can be completely covered when combining the limits of multiple defendants.
However, it is important to note that you will not be allowed to recover more in compensation than the damages you actually incurred, regardless of how many at-fault parties there are.
Umbrella policies exist when a single defendant is covered by multiple insurance companies. These policies are designed to take effect when an insured faces liability in excess of the original policy limits.
Although umbrella policies are most commonly held by corporations and large businesses, it is possible for private individuals to purchase them as well.
Collecting Directly from the Defendant
Another option to collecting excess damages is to file a lawsuit directly against the at-fault individual as opposed to the individual’s insurer. In such cases, a court may resort to placing liens on the individual’s possessions and property. However, as is often the case, this route is often difficult. This is because individuals alone may lack sufficient funds or assets to pay off a jury verdict or judge award. In these cases, any such judgment will be deemed uncollectible.
Our Boulder Injury Attorneys Will Fight for You
Policy limits may seem like a barrier that insurance companies put up in order to prevent you from collecting the compensation that you deserve. However, it is important to remember that you do not always have to settle for the policy limit figure. A combination of factors must be considered in order to establish the best strategy for maximizing compensation.
At Zinda Law Group, our Boulder attorneys are here to ensure you won’t have to face the insurance company alone. Our attorneys are experienced in helping clients negotiate claim settlements, and we have the resources necessary to help you build the strongest claim. We will work tirelessly to assist you in seeking compensation for medical bills, property damage, lost wages, pain and suffering, and more.
Our firm also believes that an injury victim should never have to worry about being able to afford legal representation. That is why we offer 100% free consultations, and why you pay nothing unless we win your case. That’s our No Fee Guarantee.
If you would like to speak with an Boulder injury lawyer, or to learn more about policy limits and how they can affect your claim, call Zinda Law Group at (800) 863-5312 to receive your free case evaluation.
Meetings with attorneys are by appointment only.