Has Your Vehicle Been Deemed a Total loss?
Omid Badie, Car Smart Eletter, 2022-08-04, 2022-08-04
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Nobody ever plans for it, but it happens occasionally where your insurance company determines that your vehicle is a total loss as a result of physical damage (where the cost of repair is close to or exceeds the fair market value of your car) or stolen (and not recovered).
It can be a stressful time for many as most people have never experienced this sort of thing before. In our experience having dealt with over 100,000 claims, insurance companies are not great at explaining the process in a way that people can easily understand it and know what to expect. Here's the quick 3 step overview of what will happen.
1. The insurance company will run a report, typically through third party data aggregators, to determine a pre-accident value and make you a settlement offer to basically buy back the damaged vehicle at the pre-damaged price.
2. If you accept, they will issue you payment and they become the owners of the vehicle.
3. Once they make their settlement offer, you will be given a short, fixed period to accept their offer after which they will require the rental back or its continued use will be your responsibility.
Most people will accept the value without objection because they just want the process over with. However, without doing your homework, you could be receiving a value far less than actual market value. Whether you agree with their value or not, you have the right to request and question the data to demonstrate how they arrived at that value and advise the adjuster ift he value should be higher.
But how do you navigate through the process, exactly what questions do you ask, and how do you analyze the data they provide?
Certainly, it is not an easy task. However, there are resources to help. A free guide is available from Automall Network that you can here.
If you have any questions, feel free to contact us, but make sure to do it before you settle, the earlier the better.
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