2014 Oklahoma Statutes
Title 36. Insurance
§36-1250.8. Motor vehicle total loss or damage claim.

36 OK Stat § 36-1250.8 (2014) What's This?

A. If an insurance policy or insurance contract provides for the adjustment and settlement of first party motor vehicle total losses, on the basis of actual cash value or replacement with another of like kind and quality, one of the following methods shall apply:

1. An insurer may elect to offer a replacement motor vehicle which is a specific comparable motor vehicle available to the insured, with all applicable taxes, license fees, and other fees incident to the transfer of evidence of ownership of the motor vehicle paid, at no cost to the insured other than any deductible provided in the policy. The offer and any rejection thereof shall be documented in the claim file; or

2. An insurer may elect a cash settlement based upon the actual cost, less any deductible provided in the policy, to purchase a comparable motor vehicle, including all applicable taxes, license fees and other fees incident to a transfer of evidence of ownership, or a comparable motor vehicle. Such cost may be determined by:

a.the cost of a comparable motor vehicle in the local market area when a comparable motor vehicle is currently or recently available in the prior ninety (90) days in the local market area,

b.one of two or more quotations obtained by an insurer from two or more qualified dealers located within the local market area when a comparable motor vehicle is not available in the local market area, or

c.the cost of a comparable motor vehicle as quoted in the latest edition of the National Automobile Dealers Association Official Used Car Guide or monthly edition of any other nationally recognized published guidebook.

B. If a first party motor vehicle total loss is settled on a basis which deviates from the methods described in subsection A of this section, the deviation shall be supported by documentation giving particulars of the condition of the motor vehicle. Any deductions from such cost, including, but not limited to, deduction for salvage, shall be measurable, discernible, itemized and specified as to dollar amount and shall be appropriate in amount. The basis for such settlement shall be fully explained to a first party claimant.

C. If liability for motor vehicle damages is reasonably clear, insurers shall not recommend that third party claimants make claims pursuant to the third party claimants' own policies solely to avoid paying claims pursuant to such insurer's insurance policy or insurance contract.

D. Insurers shall not require a claimant to travel unreasonably either to inspect a replacement motor vehicle, obtain a repair estimate or have the motor vehicle repaired at a specific repair shop.

E. Insurers shall, upon the request of a claimant, include the deductible of a first party claimant, if any, in subrogation demands. Subrogation recoveries shall be shared on a proportionate basis with a first party claimant, unless the deductible amount has been otherwise recovered. No deduction for expenses shall be made from a deductible recovery unless an outside attorney is retained to collect such recovery. The deduction shall then be made for only a pro rata share of the allocated loss adjustment expense.

F. If an insurer prepares an estimate of the cost of automobile repairs, such estimate shall be in an amount for which it reasonably may be expected that the damage can be repaired satisfactorily. An insurer shall give a copy of an estimate to a claimant and may furnish to the claimant the names of one or more conveniently located repair shops, if requested by the claimant.

G. If an amount claimed is reduced because of betterment or depreciation, all information for such reduction shall be contained in the claim file. Such deductions shall be itemized and specified as to dollar amount and shall be appropriate for the amount of deductions.

H. An insurer or its representative shall not require a claimant to obtain motor vehicle repairs at a specific repair facility. An insurer or its representative shall not require a claimant to obtain motor vehicle glass repair or replacement at a specific motor vehicle glass repair or replacement facility. An insurer shall fully and promptly pay for the cost of the motor vehicle repair services or products, less any applicable deductible amount payable according to the terms of the policy. The claimant shall be furnished an itemized priced statement of repairs by the repair facility at the time of acceptance of the repaired motor vehicle. Unless a cash settlement is made, if a claimant selects a motor vehicle repair or motor vehicle glass repair or replacement facility, the insurer shall provide payment to the facility or claimant based on a competitive price, as established by that insurer through market surveys or by the insured through competitive bids at the insured's option, to determine a fair and reasonable market price for similar services. Reasonable deviation from this market price is allowed based on the facts in each case.

I. An insurer shall not use as a basis for cash settlement with a first party claimant an amount which is less than the amount which an insurer would pay if repairs were made, other than in total loss situations, unless such amount is agreed to by the insured.

J. An insurer shall not force a claimant to execute a full settlement release in order to settle a property damage claim involving a personal injury.

K. All payment or satisfaction of a claim for a motor vehicle which has been transferred by title to the insurer shall be paid by check or draft, payable on demand.

L. In the event of payment of a total loss to a third party claimant, the insurer shall include any registered lienholder as copayee to the extent of the lienholder’s interest.

M. As used in this section, "total loss" means that the vehicle repair costs plus the salvage value of the vehicle meets or exceeds the actual cash value of the motor vehicle prior to the loss, as provided in used automobile dealer guidebooks.

N. An insurer shall not offer a cash settlement as provided in paragraph 2 of subsection A of this section for the purchase of a comparable motor vehicle and then subsequently sell the motor vehicle which has been determined to be a total loss back to the claimant if the insurer has determined that the repair of the vehicle would not result in the vehicle being restored to operative condition as provided in Section 1111 of Title 47 of the Oklahoma Statutes unless the claimant specifies in writing or via an electronic signature that the claimant understands that the motor vehicle shall be titled as a “junked vehicle”.

Added by Laws 1986, c. 251, § 19, eff. Nov. 1, 1986. Amended by Laws 1987, c. 175, § 12, eff. Nov. 1, 1987; Laws 1993, c. 225, § 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1993; Laws 1994, c. 342, § 8, eff. Sept. 1, 1994. Renumbered from § 1257 of this title by Laws 1994, c. 342, § 20, eff. Sept. 1, 1994. Amended by Laws 2001, c. 363, § 13, eff. July 1, 2001; Laws 2003, c. 358, § 1, eff. Nov. 1, 2003; Laws 2010, c. 321, § 1, eff. Nov. 1, 2010.

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