How long does an insurance company have to pay a claim that is clearly determined that their insured was at fault?

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Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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UPDATED: Dec 7, 2011

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Insurance Question from Hollister, CA

Asked on 12/07/2011

How long does an insurance company have to pay a claim that is clearly determined that their insured was at fault? My sons car was hit in the high school parking lot ( driver drove off but was later caught do to witnesses) a police report was filed and we got a repair estimate from a sState farm ins approved auto repair shop. it has been over a month...there is no reason for this not to have already been paid but the insurance company is dragging their feet.

Answer given on December 08, 2011

Call State Farm and ask why this is not being paid.  Call the body shop and make an appointment to take your car in for repair. Advise SF of the appoint and let them know that they need to pay for this car once complete.  You are correct, it does not by any means take a month to pay for a vehicle. Normally once fault is established and you get an estimate, you can  normally take the car in for repair at any time after that. They could be waiting on you to take the car in. See what they say when you call.  That is after you make the appointment.  Remember, they may also owe you a rental car when the car is being repaired.   

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