27-303 Unfair Claim Settlement Practices seem really redundant (at least for Property and Casualty Insurance)
March 9, 2015
People should not bother bringing 27-303 actions because 27-1001 actions are better. (Assuming you can bring a 27-1001 of course. 27-1001 only applies to Property and Casualty insurers. 27-303 also applies to Health Insurers.)
The first thing I noticed about 27-303 Unfair Claim Settlement Practices claims is that they are basically identical to 27-1001 actions, except 27-1001 have jury trials. 27-1001 and 27-303 are superficially different. They articulate the violation differently. "Failure to act in good faith" is different language than "unfair settlement claim practice." But on a practical level, they both deter high similar if not identical conduct.
From an Insured's perspective, bringing a 27-303 is suboptimal. You get an administrative remedy and administrative appeals for a defined list of wrongs. If you win, the Insurer gets a fine and you get damages and attorneys fees. If you bring a 27-1001 action, however, you get the option for a jury trial, damages, attorneys fees, and possible punitive damages (assuming Maryland follows most states on this issue.)