When dealing with an insurance company, unfortunately, a common question that arises is: what is insurance bad faith? The basic answer is straightforward. When a consumer (an insured) pays for an insurance policy from an insurer they are entering into a contractual relationship with a party which possesses superior bargaining and actual power. Based on this reality – what lawyers call a contract of adhesion – the law requires an insurer/insurance company to treat an insured (a consumer) fairly – at both the common law and by West Virginia statute. Fundamentally, the obligation of good faith is implied, and created by, the nature of the relationship between an insured and an insurer. Bad faith is thus when an insurance company does not honor this obligation, either at contract, West Virginia common law or under a governing West Virginia statute, to an insured/policyholder’s loss or detriment – despite for example year over year premium payment to an insurance company and a clear obligation to treat an insured with good faith.
If you believe that an insurance company has treated you in bad faith, unfairly, or has misrepresented the contractual terms and benefits of your insurance policy please contact our office for an insurance policy evaluation and for a claim evaluation. We have substantial experience litigating claims of bad faith against numerous insurance companies across West Virginia.