Can You Force Your Disability Insurance Company to Pay Your Attorneys’ Fees in an Own Occupation Litigation?
The short answer is it depends upon which court and judge is hearing your case. The New York state and federal courts are divided whether an insured under a private insurance policy can force her insurance company to pay her legal fees. Some courts align their thinking with the American Rule that developed as an understanding that regardless how successful a litigant is, he will be responsible for his own attorneys’ fees.
Other courts acknowledge that attorneys’ fees are recoverable in addition to what the insurance company owes their customer. Relying on a couple of decisions rendered in 2008, by New York’s highest court, the New York Court of Appeals, these courts agree that an insured can obtain a judgment of attorneys’ fees as a consequence of the insurance company’s bad faith actions.
Because the law is not settled, it is even more incumbent upon every insured fighting for their disability benefits to seek reimbursement of their attorneys’ fees.
If you need help with your disability claim, call Gisonni Law Firm today at (516) 204-4160.