Under Colorado law, insurance companies selling automobile insurance in Colorado are required to sell Uninsured/Under-Insured Motorist Insurance as part of every policy sold in Colorado unless the coverage is specifically refused in writing. Uninsured or under-insured (UM/UIM) coverage is a separate coverage that provides coverage to you and your passengers if injured in an accident caused by an uninsured or under-insured driver.
If you are involved in a motor vehicle accident with someone who does not have automobile insurance or does not have enough automobile insurance, you may be able to make a claim for the same kind of damages you could have recovered from the at-fault driver's insurance had the driver been insured. If you make a claim for your uninsured/under-insured insurance benefits, your insurance company owes you a first-party duty of good faith and fair dealing...
This means that your own insurance company must promptly investigate the motor vehicle collision and promptly compensate you for your accident-related injuries and losses. If your own insurance company does not adhere to their own obligation of good faith and handle your claim for uninsured/under-insured benefits in a prompt and reasonable manner, you may have a claim for bad faith against your own insurance company.
It is important to note that if you are making a claim for under-insured motorist benefits, most policies issued in Colorado require that you first seek and obtain permission from your own insurance company before you accept any settlement with the at-fault driver's insurance company. This contract provision means that if you settle with the at-fault driver without first obtaining permission to do so from your own insurance company you will not be allowed to present an under-insured motorist claim to your own insurance company.
In some instances, if you have a dispute with your own auto insurance company about the benefits they owe to you, your insurance policy will require that you submit your claim to an arbitration panel for a decision as to how your claim should be resolved. Arbitration is an alternative form of resolving disputes. It is similar to a trial, except that instead of a jury deciding how your case will be resolved, a panel of attorneys or retired judges will decide the outcome of your case. Before proceeding on a claim for uninsured/under-insured benefits, it is very important to have one of the experienced automobile accident attorneys at Bachus & Schanker, LLC review your insurance policy and help you determine the manner in which your...
insurance dispute must be resolved.
Medical Payments Disputes
Another optional coverage many consumers purchase on their automobile insurance policy is medical payments coverage or Med Pay. A "medical payment" benefit is an optional form of coverage that will require your own auto insurance company to pay some portion of your medical expenses until the claim with the at-fault driver's insurance company is resolved. If your own automobile insurance company refuses to properly pay your reasonable and necessary, accident-related medical expenses pursuant to your Med Pay coverage, then you may have a claim for bad faith against your own insurance company.