Defending against Bad Faith Claims


The foundation of Pullin, Fowler, Flanagan, Brown & Poe lies in our relationship with the insurance industry. We understand how the insurance industry functions as a whole, including claims adjustment procedures, and appreciate the demands under which its management and staff operate. Insureds are all too anxious to allege bad faith when a claim does not proceed in the manner they think it should. Our attorneys help insurance companies throughout West Virginia, Ohio and Kentucky construct a vigorous defense when these claims arise.


In 2005, the 1st Session of the 77th West Virginia Legislature ended with a flurry of activity aimed to reform West Virginia’s tort system. As part of this tort reform, the legislature abolished a third party claimant’s “bad faith” cause of action, as of July 7, 2005. Under the new bad faith laws, a third party claimant’s sole remedy is the filing of an administrative complaint with the West Virginia Insurance Commission. The commission is required to investigate the complaint and hold an administrative hearing and, if deemed necessary, seek appropriate measures against an insurance company. The lawyers of Pullin, Fowler, Flanagan, Brown & Poe, Flanagan, Brown & Poe can provide effective representation to companies in this administrative process.

The new law, however, did not abolish first party bad faith claims, and the need for representation for first party bad faith matters continues for insurers in West Virginia. Moreover, other states continue to provide an expansive cause of action for insurance bad faith, including liquidated and punitive damages. Under some state laws, liability for bad faith can far exceed that of the underlying claim.


The bad faith litigation practice group at Pullin, Fowler, Flanagan, Brown & Poe provides a range of services to insurers, including in-house training and seminars, and consulting with their insurer clients prior to the inception of litigation regarding issues of insurer bad faith and insurance coverage. We expend substantial effort to resolve potential bad faith claims before litigation and are experienced in the use of mediation, arbitration and other forms of alternative dispute resolution for both bad faith claims and underlying liability claims without resorting to litigation. If litigation becomes necessary, the attorneys of Pullin, Fowler, Flanagan, Brown & Poe can aggressively litigate and try these important cases.

Pullin, Fowler, Flanagan, Brown & Poe helps insurance companies fight bad faith allegations

Pullin, Fowler, Flanagan, Brown & Poe’s attorneys are intimately familiar with the latest developments in West Virginia bad faith law and also diligently defend insurance companies in other states, such as Ohio and Kentucky, against allegations of bad faith. Call us at 304-344-0100 or contact us online to begin a relationship with a law firm that is nationally recognized for experience and quality while remaining dedicated to its community and employees.