Insurance policy

Oklahoma Verdict Exposes Bad Faith Insurance in Wrongful Death Case

In the world of personal injury law, bad faith insurance can significantly impact wrongful death suits, as evidenced by our case Price v. Mid-Continent Casualty Co. In this case, the insurer initially underpaid a wrongful death claim, resulting in a bad faith lawsuit and significant additional damages.

The Case: Price v. Mid-Continent Casualty Co.

In Price v. Mid-Continent Casualty Co., the plaintiffs filed a wrongful death suit following the tragic death of their son in an automobile accident. The core of the dispute was the insurance policy limit. The insurance company initially paid only $10,000, arguing that this was the policy limit, while the plaintiffs contended that the policy provided for a $250,000 limit. This significant difference in interpretation led to prolonged legal battles and further anguish for the family.

Bad Faith Actions

The concept of bad faith in insurance refers to an insurer's failure to fulfill its obligations to its policyholders. In this case, Mid-Continent was found to have acted in bad faith by:

  • Failing to Properly Investigate: The insurer did not thoroughly investigate the claim, which would have clarified the actual policy limits.
  • Delaying Payment: By delaying the payment and underpaying the claim, the insurer exacerbated the financial strain on the family.
  • Offering Inadequate Compensation: The initial payment of $10,000 was far below what the plaintiffs believed they were entitled to, leading to a significant legal battle.

Legal Outcome

The court's ruling in favor of the plaintiffs resulted in a substantial financial payout. Mid-Continent was initially ordered to pay $750,000 in the wrongful death suit. Additionally, the bad faith claim led to further punitive damages against the insurer. These damages serve not only to compensate the victims but also to hold the insurer accountable for its wrongful conduct and to deter similar behavior in the future.

Insurance companies have a duty to act in good faith and deal fairly with their policyholders. If you suspect bad faith insurance practices in a wrongful death case, contact us today.

Give us a call at (918) 265-1214 or fill out the online contact form to discuss the details of your case with our experienced team.

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