When is a car a total loss after an accident?

On Behalf of Renick Law Firm, PLLC |
Jan 08, 2022 |

An auto crash can do a lot of damage to your vehicle. Along with any medical costs you incur from the wreck, the repair bills for your car will probably be stressful for you. If you are fortunate enough, you may be able to have your car fixed. Still, some vehicles are a total loss after a collision.

It may not be clear whether your car is a total loss or not. According to WalletHub, there are some standards for determining whether repairing your vehicle is possible or unfeasible given the circumstances.

When a vehicle is a total loss

People generally learn that they have a totaled vehicle when an insurance adjuster informs them that the amount needed to repair a car would exceed the value of the car itself. Sometimes adjusters explain that it is not possible to repair a car safely or to repair the vehicle in any case. State law may also dictate when to consider a vehicle a total loss.

Options to consider

If you have a totaled car, you will probably file a claim to get a reimbursement for the value of your vehicle, though you will subtract any deductibles you may have. Not all reimbursements are the same. The type of coverage you will file the claim under will depend on how your vehicle got totaled.

Be aware of other insurance options that may help you. If you have gap insurance, you may cover any outstanding costs you had if you were paying a lease or a loan on your car. If you file for a new car replacement, you may replace your totaled car with a vehicle of comparable value.

Keeping your totaled car

You might be able to keep your totaled car and try to finance the repairs yourself. However, the state may brand your car with a salvage title until you can fully restore the vehicle. Also, some insurance companies are hesitant to cover a totaled car.

Going through a serious accident can be a stressful experience. Take the time to consider your options. If you choose to file a claim to receive compensation for your totaled vehicle, read your insurance policy carefully to know your rights.