Malman Law is a personal injury law firm that has collected hundreds of millions of dollars for over 20,000 injured clients in Greater Chicago and elsewhere in Illinois. We have spent decades fighting Big Insurance, and we absolutely will not allow our clients to be tricked or bullied by auto insurance companies that put their customers’ interests on the back burner in the service of their own bottom line.
GEICO, which stands for Government Employees Insurance Company, is not at all that its name implies, since it is not owned or operated by any government. It is a private, for-profit insurance company that writes well over $20 billion in premiums, making it America’s second-largest auto insurer. Like any other private business, it seeks to maximize its profit. It does so in two main ways: By accepting premiums from customers, and by denying or minimizing claims filed by some of those very same customers.
Your vehicle accident claim will be based on two major sources of law: (i) the terms of your GEICO auto insurance policy and (ii) Illinois state law. The most relevant features of Illinois auto insurance law include:
At Malman Law, we handle just about any type of vehicle accident claim serious enough to require the services of a lawyer, including:
Depending on the facts surrounding your accident, you might file a GEICO auto insurance claim in one of two different ways: 1. Third-Party Claims Illinois is a “fault” auto insurance state. This means that your first resort when an accident is the fault of another driver is to claim against the other driver’s liability insurance policy. Since you are not listed as the insured on the negligent driver’s GEICO insurance policy, your claim will be considered a third-party claim. Your two most serious challenges when filing a third-party claim will be:
i. Determining the terms of the policy. Insurance policies tend to be written in “legalese,” and you can bet your bottom dollar that GEICO is not going to be eager to explain the terms to you in plain English, knowing that you can use this knowledge as leverage to secure a higher settlement offer.ii. Filing a lawsuit, or credibly threatening to do so, if the insurance company stonewalls you or refuses to offer an adequate settlement. Insurance companies generally do not want to go to court because of the expense and legal risk of doing so. For this reason, the realistic threat of a lawsuit is often enough to get them to increase their settlement offer. If you are not represented by an attorney, however, or if your attorney has little or no courtroom experience, a threat to file a lawsuit is unlikely to be taken seriously.
2. Claims Against Your Own Policy Even if the accident was the other driver’s fault, you will need to seek compensation under your own uninsured/underinsured motorist policy if:
i. You were the victim of a hit and run accident and you cannot locate the offending driver.ii. The offending driver carries no liability insurance (which is illegal in Illinois) and lacks the financial resources to pay your claim out of his or her personal resources. iii. The value of your claim exceeds the policy limits of the offending driver’s liability insurance policy ($25,000 for a one injury accident if the driver carries only the legal minimum coverage).
2 years ago I was involved in a trucking accident involving a 14-wheeler truck that nearly disabled me for life. Steve fought to make sure that I received the most possible compensation for my injuries. I was about to take the insurance company’s lowball offer, but decided to call Steve first – it was the best decision I’ve made yet
NOAH TAFFELPersonal Injury Victim