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Opening Up Insurance Policy Limits in California

Insurance policy limits in California

The Insurance Companies Are Not Always Right.

Insurance companies have an obligation to put their clients’ interests ahead of their own. It’s their duty to defend the insured in court. Not just cutting checks, they often lose sight of these obligations. Insurance companies are in the business of saving money.

The first thing that happens after a car accident is an insurance claim. In many cases, the injuries that were caused by the other driver’s negligence may exceed the policy limits. Yet, the insurance companies frequently refuse to settle with the injured victim. It is within or at the negligent driver’s policy limits would want to take their chances in a trial. When insurance companies do this, they are choosing interests over clients. Since they are the ones who stand to lose if the insurance company’s risk does not pay off. The California Supreme Court has explained that the duty to protect the insured from the insurer’s gamble. In which only the insured might lose.” (Murphy v. Allstate Insurance Company (1976) 17 Cal.3d 937, 941.).

Opening Up The Policy Limits In California

At Freeway Law, we work diligently and aggressively on each clients’ behalf. This is to make sure that they would receive the right amount of compensation for their injuries. If the insurance company refuses a reasonable settlement offer within the policy limits, it is playing a dangerous game. If the judgment exceeds the policy limits, the insurance company is liable for the entire judgment. It includes the amount in excess of policy limits. (Blue Ridge Ins. Co. v. Jacobsen (2001) 25 Cal.4th 489, 502.) This is what is typically referred to in the industry as “opening up” or “popping” a policy. We need to remind the insurance company that acting out of line by denying our clients the policy limit.

How Do You Actually Open Up The Insurance Policy Limit in California?

There’s a process before a policy can be opened up. First, the claimant must make a reasonable settlement offer within the insurance policy limits in California. The claimant or their attorney must provide the insurance company with enough access to all information. It could be medical bills and records reasonably necessary to make a decision on the claim. Sufficient time which is usually 30 days, must be allowed to the insurance company. It is to consider and evaluate the demand and information about the claim. A short time frame may prevent the policy from opening up. The claimant must offer a full release of liability relating to the accident. The settlement offer must be reasonable.

How We Can Help You?

At Freeway Law, our auto car accident lawyers know the insurance policy limits in California. Give us a call if you have been injured in a serious car accident. We will evaluate your case and see if it is an appropriate case to demand the policy limits. Our team will provide the necessary information. Any refusal to pay those limits will risk opening up the policy.

Learn more about auto car accident law by reading our latest posts on our Medium page.

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