Insurance Vs Warranty | Bennett Law Firm

warranty vs insuranceOur experienced insurance bad faith attorneys represent residents throughout the state who have had their Oklahoma insurance warranty claim wrongfully denied after experiencing a loss, such as damage to one’s business, home or vehicle. We represent people who are treated unfairly by their insurance provider throughout Oklahoma. Our bad faith insurance attorneys can help a person who has had his or her claim denied or is confronted with an insurance company that refuses to appropriately handle his or her claim in a timely fashion.  Our experienced Oklahoma bad faith insurance lawyers will diligently seek the compensation that you are entitled to regardless of the type of insurance or nature of your covered loss.

One confusing distinction for many people when they experience property damage or a loss is the difference between a warranty and insurance.  This is a fundamental distinction because when a car dealer or manufacturer will not agree to repair or replace your vehicle pursuant to the included warranty, you are limited in a lawsuit for contractual damages, which is far more limited than damages that may be awarded in a bad faith insurance claim.  The critical difference is the availability of punitive damages when a provider of an insurance product refuses to deal in good faith with its insured.  The Bennett Law Firm represents clients throughout Oklahoma who assert bad faith insurance claims where their insurer refuses to handle their claim for damage or property loss in a reasonable fashion.

A family’s vehicle is often one of its most important and valuable assets, and the average new family vehicle cost $25,600 with the cost of many family SUVs now exceeding $40,000.  When you purchase a motor vehicle, you expect it to operate properly and without serious problems.  All new vehicles and most used vehicles come with a warranty, which is included in the sales price of the vehicle.  The warranty is part of the “basis of the bargain” when a buyer commits to purchase a vehicle at a given price.  A warranty on a new or used car, truck or SUV provides assurances that the vehicle is reliable and free of certain defects and that the seller will, without charge, repair or replace defective parts within a given time limit and under certain conditions.  All warranties sold with a vehicle are limited in duration and in the types of defects that they cover.

If your vehicle needs repair for a defect covered by the included warranty, and the dealer or manufacturer will not cooperate, you can only sue for “contract damages” i.e. your out of pocket costs for repair, loss of use and perhaps attorneys fees.  The fundamental problem is this limits the value of the claim to the cost of repair and an additional amount for the period of non-use.  The limited scope of these damages means that you will typically be stuck pursuing a claim for less than a thousand dollars or so.  This means the cost of litigation will exceed the value of your claim.  You can seek relief in small claims court, but you must do so without an attorney.  Additionally, most small claims judgements are never paid because the average lay person does not know how to go about enforcing the judgment.

When an insurance claim is denied because the insurance provider refuses to deal with the insured in good faith, the court may be much more liberal in awarding damages.  If a person has a bad faith denial of insurance claim, the court may award extensive punitive damages making it economically feasible to file a lawsuit, which the bad faith insurance attorneys will handle on a contingency basis.

Extended warranties (also called “vehicle service contracts”) start where traditional insurance coverage ends.  An extended warranty will typically cover additional systems or defects that may not be covered by the included insurance that comes with the vehicle and often provides bumper to bumper coverage while extending the term of coverage.  Vehicle service contracts typically involve paying an up-front fee for the additional coverage.  Oklahoma law treats extended warranties as an insurance product, which means that punitive damages are available if the vehicle service contract provider refuses to deal with you in good faith and repair or replace your vehicle.

If your extended warranty provider fails to deal fairly with you and refuses to repair or replace your vehicle or is simply unwilling to handle your claim reasonably, our Oklahoma insurance bad faith attorneys can help.  Our Oklahoma bad faith insurance attorneys will employ our extensive expertise and experience to compel your vehicle service contract provider to perform the contractual obligations for which they have collected pre-paid premiums.  Our Oklahoma insurance bad faith attorneys work on a contingency fee basis so you do not pay attorney’s fees unless we obtain a favorable settlement or court judgement on your behalf.  This means that you have nothing to lose and everything to gain.

Feel free to schedule a free consultation online or call The Bennett Law Firm at 405.272.0303 to discuss your legal options with an experienced Oklahoma City lawyer today. No Recovery, No Fee! We will meet with you face to face and can handle cases anywhere in Oklahoma. We can even come to you!