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We got hit by a lightning storm-related power surge earlier this month and are going through the process of claiming on our HOI policy. Our 1-mo old TV got fried in the surge and so we reported it to the Co (obviously) as part of the claim. Samsung – when I inquired about an approved repair shop, sent a technician out to look at the TV and they repaired it. Between the surge and the repair, we had ordered a new TV (identical model) that was delivered yesterday. Samsung performed the work as a warranty item even after me informing them that it was part of a HOI claim.

My view: We have a fixed TV that has had to have parts replaced. We should be able to return the brand new TV and use the money as we wish, knowing that the life of the TV may be shortened as a result of the damage. Part of the issue for me is that it feels outrageously superfluous to have a second brand new 65 4K TV that will effectively end up in our study to use for things such as spreadsheets and Adobe CC Lightroom/Photoshop.

Wife’s view: While not illegal, it makes her feel “skeezy” to be taking the money for a replacement TV and not replacing the TV just because we were able to have the old one repaired. She feels like the intended purpose for the money was to go to making us whole and to replace the 1-mo old TV. She thinks I’m stretching it to justify having the money for something else.

As it stands, one of us is going to feel uneasy with the final outcome since I feel it to be wasteful and outlandish to have this second 65″ 4K TV (the first TV we have bought in 10 years) and she feels it is verging on slimy to take the TV back and use the money for something else, such as a new laptop for her.

What are we supposed to do in this situation?””

Asked July 24, 2017

1 Answer


As you stated, the money that was given to you was to make you whole after the incident that caused you to have to file an insurance claim. As far as the insurance company is concerned, you are now whole, as you have received the full value of the television that was damaged in the accident. They no longer care whether you repair the old television, buy a new television that is cheaper, or live without a television.

Think about it this way. If you purchased a new car and elected for GAP coverage, and a month later, you are involved in a car accident that totals your car, your insurance will pay you the full value of that car, or pay off any loans you owe. You can then turn around and buy the salvage title to that car and use the insurance money to fix it up, you can buy a new car that is cheaper, you can buy a new car that is more expensive, or you can buy the same exact car brand new again.

The bottom line is, the insurance company has given you the money to make you whole after the accident. That is what they are required to do. You can then use the money how you see fit. If you are comfortable repairing the television and knowing it has a shortened lifespan, then return the new television and pocket the money. If your wife feels that it is bad karma to keep the money, there are many other options than to keep a television you will have no use for. You may donate the television to a charity, or give it to a friend or family member. Or you can return the television and donate half of the money to a charity of her choosing, while putting the other half in your bank account. This way, you both win.

Answered July 25, 2017 by InsuranceStar

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