It’s heartbreaking when your insurance company says they’re going to deny your insurance claim. It often means that you’ve violated your insurance policy in some way. For many, it segues into the problem of not being able to seek compensation for your damages as well. That double-whammy is hard to take, but you have options to fight it.
Any crash can leave people injured, and plenty of people will go through and try to seek compensation. But when you have a denial for a BAC level, you’ll have to fight hard to prove that the fault lies with the other driver. It’s not something that comes along very often, but having a BAC does not inherently mean you’re at fault. Instead, it means you may have contributed in some small way, but not in any meaningful manner.
What Is An Alcohol Exclusion Law?
In the shortest possible way, an alcohol exclusion law allows insurance companies to avoid paying for treatment when alcohol is present. Initially, the goal of these types of requirements was to establish a definite consequence for driving under the influence. That if you were driving drunk, then you weren’t covered.
While the alcohol exclusion law seems pretty reasonable, it brought with it a lot of unexpected consequences. Doctors were unsure if they could treat patients if they only worked on a specific medical network. Others did provide treatment and left the patient with ridiculous amounts of medical debt that they probably weren’t likely to ever pay.
Inpatient treatment after an auto collision averages $11,260 per person. That’s not even a “bad” crash or a vehicle with multiple people in the car. The alcohol exclusion law is good in theory; however, many states have started to change the laws to better serve the medical community.
Georgia still has an alcohol exclusion law. However, they permit coverage for the victim. Basically, the liability remains intact, but all other coverage is gone. Insurance companies in Georgia have the right to terminate the policy because of a BAC as well.
But I Was Under The Limit –Does It Matter?
Typically if you’re under the limit, then you’re fine. However, if you were driving erratically or dangerously, then you will likely face a negligence or carelessness allegation. Often that situation is called a “wet reck” for wet and reckless. This could also lead to your insurance provider dropping your policy. Insurance companies operate as businesses, not a government program that everyone has a right to. In many of their policy terms, you’ll find statements that end with, “will result in the immediate termination of your policy.”
If your BAC was above zero, but below the legal limit, then there really is no direct reason for your policy to end. Additionally, your policy should also acknowledge that having a BAC above zero does not automatically make you the at-fault party.
Contesting The Insurance Claim Denial
Denial of an insurance claim is rather uncommon. Now the adjuster may have believed that you contributed to the crash, but that doesn’t mean that you don’t get approval for your claim. When you receive a claim denial, you’ll need to go through line-by-line and assess why it was rejected.
If the insurance company wants to deny your claim because you were under the influence, you could argue that determination. For example, if you were in a really bad wreck, and during your hospital admittance, your bloodwork came back with a 0.02% BAC, that’s not reasonable. However, if you drove into a building with a BAC of 0.20%, then that’s a little different.
We understand that you’re the victim; you were hit. And suddenly it’s unbelievable hard to work with a company you’ve paid for years.
If the Insurance Company Tries to Deny Your Claim, Contact a Douglasville Car Wreck Attorney
Finding support after a drunk driving accident is tough. But, it’s worse when you were actually okay to drive. Now, you’re the victim of a car accident, but no one really sees it that way. Your BAC might have been above zero, but if it was under the legal limit, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t have your claim processed.
Georgia and many other states allow people to try to get away with a crash by blaming the other driver. At John B. Jackson, you can count on our team of attorneys. With a reliable history of successful case handling, we go forward with each case looking at what makes it unique. Your combination of having to fight a claim, while being the victim makes for a particularly stand-out case. Call our Douglasville car wreck law firm now to get help when help is hard to find.