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Seattle Insurance Fair Conduct Act (IFCA)

If your insurance company unreasonably denied your insurance claim or violated laws that governed unfair claims settlement practices, you may have a legal claim under the Insurance Fair Conduct Act (IFCA). The IFCA was passed by the Washington State Legislature in 2007, and it allows policyholders an opportunity to fight the insurance company with a more level playing field. The Seattle insurance attorneys at Olive|Bearb Law Group, PLLC have the necessary experience to help you challenge then insurance company when they have treated you unfairly.

Do You Have A Claim Under The Insurance Fair Conduct Act?

Under the IFCA, insurance companies have an obligation to act reasonably in investigating and adjusting insurance claims. This can include conducting a complete investigation before denying coverage, acting reasonably and fairly in the payment of benefits owed under the policy, and acting reasonably in the adjustment of the claim including fully communicating and promptly responding to policyholders' letters and phone calls about claims. The IFCA only applies to claims a policyholder makes against their own insurance company, including for example claims under homeowner. insurance, Personal Injury Protection (PIP) insurance and underinsured motorist insurance (UM/UIM); it does not apply to claims you have with someone else's insurance company, such as in an automobile accident where the other driver is found to be responsible. It also does not apply to health insurance companies, which are governed by the Patient Bill of Rights.

What Remedies Am I Entitled To Under IFCA?

Though no result is ever guaranteed, a successful IFCA suit may result in remedies beyond the amounts that should have been paid on the claim itself. A claimant under IFCA may recover:

  • Actual damages sustained
  • Attorney's fees and litigation costs, which can include the cost of expert witnesses
  • Punitive damages up to three times the amount of actual damages

Washington State enacted IFCA with the intention of creating a strong deterrent for insurance companies to act in bad faith. However, it has not stopped big insurance companies from doing whatever they can to limit their financial obligation; insurance companies will still sometimes attempt to limit settlements and payments on damages as much as possible, placing profit over the interests of their policyholders.

Contact An Experienced IFCA Attorney

If you believe you have a claim that is being wrongfully denied, an experienced and aggressive insurance attorney in the Seattle law office of Olive|Bearb Law Group, PLLC will leave no stone unturned in pursuing what is owed to you. Whether working with the Insurance Commission or taking your claim through litigation in court, we hold insurance companies accountable for their promises. To learn more about our legal services regarding IFCA, contact our Seattle office at 206-629-9262.