How Long Does an Insurance Company Have to Settle a Claim?


Settling Insurance Claims in TX, CA, NY, and More

How quickly insurance companies pay claims depends on which state you file your claim in. Here, we’ll briefly highlight the insurance claims settlement guidelines for the nation’s 10 most populous states.


Texas requires a claim acknowledgment within 15 days of a claim being filed. Approval or denial must be made within 15 days of all required documentation being received, but the adjuster can extend it to 45 days if they are able to give a good reason.


In California, insurance companies have 15 days to acknowledge a claim. Once acknowledged and all documentation and proof have been received, they have 40 days to approve or deny the claim. If a settlement is reached, they have 30 days to make the agreed-upon payment.

New York

New York laws provide that insurance companies have 15 days to acknowledge receipt of a claim. They have 15 days to commence an investigation and 15 days after receipt of all proof to accept or deny the claim. Payment must then be made within five business days of settlement.


Florida law states that insurance companies must begin investigating an auto accident claim within 10 days of receiving proof of loss. Furthermore, law dictates that they have 14 days to respond to any letter regarding a claim and 90 days total to deny or pay a claim.


In Pennsylvania, insurance companies have 10 business days to acknowledge your claim. They have 30 days to investigate. If it’s your own insurance company, then they have 15 days after receipt of proof of loss to notify you that they have either accepted or denied your claim.


Illinois law gives insurance companies 15 working days to provide the necessary forms to file a claim after the forms are requested. Once they received the completed forms, they have 60 days to investigate and provide an explanation of approval or denial of the claim.


Ohio law stipulates that an insurance company has 15 days to acknowledge receipt of a claim. After receipt of all properly executed proof of loss forms, the insurance company has 21 days to accept or deny the claim and provide their reasons for same. They have 10 days after a settlement to pay.


In Georgia, insurance companies have 15 days to acknowledge receipt of a claim, as well as provide proof claim forms. Once all forms are received, the insurance adjuster has 15 days to deny or accept the claim. Once a settlement has been reached, they have 10 days to pay.

North Carolina

North Carolina insurance laws are vague. The insurance company must acknowledge receipt of a claim “reasonably promptly.” Then, the timeframe to deny or accept the claim is “within a reasonable time.” The only strict deadline is to mail payment within 10 days of a settlement being reached.


Michigan insurance handling laws are indistinct. The time to acknowledge a claim and act is “promptly.” Insurance companies are required to deny or accept the claim “within a reasonable time after proof of loss.” Settlement benefits are given a clearer deadline of 60 days after settlement is reached.

How to Speed Up the Claims Process

You can’t control the insurance companies or the laws, but you can take steps to speed the claims process along.

  • Know your policy
  • Document your claim carefully, from the very beginning
  • Submit a complete “proof of loss” form with as much detail as you can give
  • Contact a personal injury lawyer who can help you understand your rights and options

What If the Insurance Company Doesn’t Pay What They Promised?

When the insurance company doesn’t meet statutory guidelines or pay the settlement you agreed to, your only option may be to sue.

To learn more about dealing with insurance companies after an accident, view our car accident page.

At Felix Gonzalez Law Firm, we’ll ensure that your rights are protected and your settlement paid promptly and fairly. Time is of the essence! Call us today for a free consultation!