How Are Claims Handled?

Find out if the retailer or someone else takes care of the repairs. Does it clearly state the information for the entity to contact to make a claim or for questions regarding the contract?  Also, is there information about the existence of a deductible?

Who Is Responsible for the Contract?

The Montana Department of Justice’s Office of Consumer Protection and other consumer protection agencies receive inquiries from consumers who ask what they can do if they have a service contract with a company that goes out of business and cannot repay claims. Unfortunately, there is little you can do if that happens. Before you sign a contract, think about the company’s financial situation and consider whether the business is reputable:

  • Look for an address and a phone number for questions or problems.
  • Do an online search with the name of the company and words like “review” or “complaint” to see if there are negative reviews of the company.
  • Visit Consumer Protection Online Services and type in the name of the company to see if complaints have been filed with the Office of Consumer Protection against the company.
Is There a Better Option?

Some consumer advocates suggest that people are better off skipping extended warranties and service contracts, and putting the money they would’ve spent in a savings account. If you need repairs, you’ll have your savings to fall back on. And if you don’t need repairs, you’ll have a little extra money in the bank.