Delay, Deny, Defend: Why Insurance Companies Don't Pay Claim and What You Can DoAbout It

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An expose of insurance injustice and a plan for consumers and lawmakers to fight it

Over the last two decades, insurance has become less of a safety net and more of a spider's web: sticky and complicated, designed to ensnare as much as to aid. Insurance companies now often try to delay payment of justified claims, deny payment altogether, and defend these actions by forcing claimants to enter litigation.

Jay M. Feinman, a legal scholar and ...

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Overview

An expose of insurance injustice and a plan for consumers and lawmakers to fight it

Over the last two decades, insurance has become less of a safety net and more of a spider's web: sticky and complicated, designed to ensnare as much as to aid. Insurance companies now often try to delay payment of justified claims, deny payment altogether, and defend these actions by forcing claimants to enter litigation.

Jay M. Feinman, a legal scholar and insurance expert, explains how these trends developed, how the government ought to fix the system, and what the rest of us can do to protect ourselves. He shows that the denial of valid claims is not occasional or accidental or the fault of a few bad employees. It's the result of an increasing and systematic focus on maximizing profits by major companies such as Allstate and State Farm.

Citing dozens of stories of victims who were unfairly denied payment, Feinman explains how people can be more cautious when shopping for policies and what to do when pursuing a disputed claim. He also lays out a plan for the legal reforms needed to prevent future abuses. This exposé will help drive the discussion of this increasingly hot- button issue.

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What People Are Saying

From the Publisher
“As a trial lawyer fighting these battles every day, I can tell you that the insurance industry has mutated from a business that was bound by promise and contract to one of profit-through-deception. Feinman focuses the bright light of truth on an industry that, like the financial services industries it is tied to, has run amok. This is a book all Americans need to read."—John Elliott Leighton, Esq., chairman, The Academy of Trial Advocacy

“Jay Feinman’s book shows how, time and again, policyholders with legitimate claims encounter nothing but resistance from insurance companies, leaving people frustrated and angry, and sometimes, destitute. Luckily, he provides some great suggestions about how consumers can fight back. This book is a must-read for anyone who needs insurance to function—and that’s everyone!”—Joanne Doroshow, executive director, Center for Justice & Democracy

"Feinman explains how America's premier insurance companies systematically rip off consumers. Do not settle your auto or home insurance claim without reading this book—-you could avoid losing hundreds, thousands, or even millions of dollars that you are owed."—J. Robert Hunter, director of insurance, Consumer Federation of America

“Jay Feinman has found all the puzzle pieces and fit them into the complete picture of how insurers cheat, who’s working to stop them, and what you can do to protect yourself.” —Amy Bach, executive director, United Policyholders

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781591843153
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
  • Publication date: 3/18/2010
  • Pages: 248
  • Product dimensions: 6.44 (w) x 9.28 (h) x 0.98 (d)

Meet the Author

Jay M. Feinman is a Distinguished Professor of Law at the Rutgers University School of Law, Camden, where he teaches contracts, torts, insurance law, and other subjects. He is a member of The American Law Institute.
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Table of Contents

Prologue 7

Introduction 11

1 How Insurance Works 29

2 How Insurance Doesn't Work 49

3 Moral Hazard, the Bottom Line, and the Origins of Delay, Deny, Defend 80

4 McKinsey Redefines the Game: Claims as a Profit Center 107

5 Mr. Incredible Goes to Work: The New, Systematic Claims Process 128

6 Lawyers, Claimants, and Into the MIST: Segmenting Automobile Claims 164

7 "Insurance Company Rules" for Auto Claims 197

8 The Risk of "All Risks" Homeowners Insurance 229

9 Hurricane Katrina and Other Insurance Catastrophes 272

10 Insurance Fraud and Other Frauds 315

11 How Consumers Can Respond to Delay, Deny, Defend 356

12 How to Stop Delay, Deny, Defend 381

Appendix: More Resources 421

Acknowledgments 429

Notes 431

Index 463

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