Can I sue my homeowners insurer for low balling me on roof replacement?

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Can I sue my homeowners insurer for low balling me on roof replacement?

I experienced roof damage from a hurricane and filed a homeowner’s insurance claim. The insurance company has agreed that I need a new roof and has basically stated that I can replace the roof for $3185 which is my policy deductible. The lowest roof replacement estimate I have gotten so far is $7960 with another estimate of $9800. Can I take legal action against my homeowner’s insurer to pay the balance of my roof replacementless my deductible of $3185.

Asked on November 26, 2018 under Insurance Law, North Carolina

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

An insurance policy is a contract. All contracts come with what is known as the "implied warranty of good faith and fair dealing": the obligation, imposed by law, that a party to a contract deal in good faith with the other party(ies) and not deliberately or intentionally take steps to deprive the other party(ies) of the benefit they paid and contracted for--such as to have their claims paid. If the insurer is only offering around 40% or less of the estimates for the work, an amount equal to your deductible, that is strong evidence they are not acting in good faith. You could therefore sue them for breach of the implied warranty of good faith and fair dealing, as well as of their policy (contractual) obligation to pay claims, for the full amount they should pay.


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