A car crash depending on the severity of the damages, may make the insurance company declare your vehicle as a total loss. Post-accident insurance claims are complicated and at times downright confusing. It is vital that you are armed with the necessary knowledge on the procedures so you know what your are entitled to. Knowing the right information also helps prevent insurers from giving you the short end of the stick.
How Is A Car Declared As Totaled?
A misconception that most folks have is that for you to be able to sell your totaled car is to have it declared totaled if it can no longer be driven due to damage incurred as a result of collision. This is not always true. The main factor that is considered when deciding if they declare it as totaled or not is always money. To explain it simply, cars are labeled as a total loss of the cost to repair is higher than the actual car value.
For instance, a car is valued a $500 but has lots of bodywork issues that costs $800 to repair. The insurance company will simply declare or define the car as a total loss.
Why Insurers Do This?
If a car is worth $3000 but requires $4000 worth of repairs then they declare it as a “total loss” as the insurance company actually will save a $1000. They also make a killing by selling your totaled car as scrap too. You also save money as the insurer will pay you the value of the car before the damage so you can purchase another similar one.
You and the insurer do not want to waste time waiting for lengthy repairs to occur before settling the claim. You can get back on the road quicker with a new vehicle purchase than wait for the current one to be fixed.
Factors That Determine Payout
The insurance company will pay you an amount based on what your car was worth prior to getting totaled.
Different models will of course have different price tags. Also the brand and type of vehicle are some of the biggest factors when determining payment to you.
Cars depreciate value over time. This is a known fact. The simple act of driving a new car out of the lot pegs the depreciation value at 11%. Within 5 years the loss can be as high as 46%. The older the car, the less value it gets. Unless it happens to be a pretty rare car in perfect condition.
Similar to a car’s age, the more mileage there is, the lesser value it has. Check your dashboard to know how much mileage has been spent on your car.
The insurer will do a thorough check in order to find out the condition of the vehicle prior to the collision. They will look for signs of negligence and factor this in on how much you will receive.
Your Involvement In The Collision
This can be quite tricky and might be the longest to decide on. Your level of responsibility will have a significant effect on how much money you can get in the event you sell your totaled car. For instance, if you got hit by another car while you were in full stop, expect to get the full amount. If the cause of the collision is vague or worse, you caused the collision, chances are you might be paid a lesser amount.
Type Of Insurance
The policy you have along with the company that insured in also plays a role on how much amount is due to you. Different companies will have different means and payment calculations. Study your insurance policy.
What To Do If Your Car Is Totaled?
First step is to check the insurance policy. Talk to your insurance agent to get more information on claims. Despite their bad reputation, most agents are pretty upfront and helpful when filing claims. All parties involved want to reach a quick solution. Still, you need to know your rights, what you are entitled to so you are not cheated out of it.
Read the insurance policy and check the procedure and what to expect. Ask questions if you are unsure of anything in the policy. Know the value of the car pre-collision. Get an estimate from different sources so you can have a good idea of the car’s worth.
Sell Your Totaled Car To A Junkyard
If your car is totaled, your best option is to sell it to a reputable junk car buyer like Max Cash for Junk Cars. In this way you cut your losses and be able to move on. There is little to no benefit of trying to repair or refurbish a car that has been declared a total loss. Talk to several junkyards to learn more about how you can get cash for your junk car.