California Wildfire Attorneys
The recent devastation from California wildfires has left thousands of California residents injured or suffering from severe property loss. Insurance claims, healthcare costs, and other legal issues after such a disaster can leave many California citizens wondering where to turn for help. The Orange County personal injury lawyers at Bentley & More LLP are committed to helping your family recover compensation from the losses you suffered in the wake of California’s devastating wildfires.
If you or a loved one were seriously injured or lost your home in a California wildfire, our wildfire attorneys can help. We have the skill, resources and experience to hold those responsible for the fire accountable and compel insurance companies to handle your claim fairly.
Understanding your legal rights is the first step in recouping your losses and moving forward. Contact our California wildfire lawyers today to schedule a free review of your legal options.
Steps to Take After a Wildfire
- If your family suffered injuries, the loss of a loved one, property damage, or other losses following the California wildfires, it’s important to take steps that protect your rights. We recommend that all wildfire victims take the following actions:
- Document everything. Save all correspondence from the insurance company, and all receipts for hotels and alternate transportation, make copies of all your medical records and bills, if applicable.
- Make a record of your losses. Any items destroyed in the fire should be covered by your insurance policy, as they intend to replace everything with their actual cash value. Make sure all your possessions are accounted for and keep an inventory of all your damaged items. Your insurance company will likely ask for your date of purchase and cost whenever possible.
- Obtain a copy of the fire report, if possible. In the event of massive wildfires, the report might not be available. If you have access to one, it might prove helpful to your insurance or claims.
- Discuss your legal options with an attorney. Getting legal representation involved early in the process can cause an insurance company to take your claim more seriously and reduces the chance of insurance bad faith.
If you have been a victim of California’s wildfires, contact the California wildfire lawyers at Bentley & More LLP as soon as possible. Our office has extensive experience negotiating with third parties and insurance companies and will hold them accountable for the full extent of your losses. Don’t let others take advantage of your vulnerability during this difficult time. Schedule your free initial consultation and use our contingency-fee legal services today.
Insurance Claims After a Wildfire
In the aftermath of a wildfire, insurance issues can present one of the most common headaches for homeowners, renters, and others who suffered losses. As a policyholder, you pay your insurance premiums faithfully with the expectation that you’ll have help when you need it most. Unfortunately, many people find themselves in conflict with insurers following a disaster. You need effective legal representation that will defend your rights and help you achieve maximum compensation after suffering serious losses.
Insurance companies lose money when they pay out on your claim. Since many people are filing claims for property damage at once, they stand to lose a lot of money following a disaster like a wildfire. Though you purchased an insurance policy in good faith, insurance companies don’t always pay out claims in the same manner.
What Is Insurance Bad Faith?
Under California law, insurance companies are required to process all insurance claims promptly, honestly, and fairly. Failure to pay out a claim in good faith or within a designated time frame may constitute insurance bad faith. Insurers may be financially responsible for any bad faith actions that occur, such as:
- Manipulating the findings of an investigation
- Lowering a claim amount
- Unreasonably denying a claim
- Delaying a claim payout without explanation
- Misrepresenting policy language
- Making an unreasonably low settlement offer for your claim
If you have reason to suspect that your insurance company is acting in bad faith, contact the attorneys at Bentley & More LLP as soon as possible. We hold insurers accountable and demand fair claim payouts on behalf of our clients.