If you’ve suffered a major car accident, your primary concerns are any injuries you’ve suffered and how you’re going to recover. However, second only to the physical effects of the accident is what to do about your car.
When your car has suffered extensive damage, it’s possible that your insurer will declare your vehicle a total loss, which can leave you in a very difficult situation. Fortunately, if your car has been deemed a total loss, you’re not completely out of options, and may still be able to get the funding you need to move on with your life.
Learn what to do after your car has been declared a total loss and how you can get help by hiring car accident lawyer to fight for your rights.
A Word About Insurance
The extent to which your car’s damages will be covered depends on what the insurance rules are in your state. For example, if you live in a state that works under standard liability rules, you will have to prove the negligence of the other driver before an insurer will give you a payout.
If, however, your accident occurred in a no-fault insurance state, most of your damages will be covered regardless of who was deemed culpable in causing the accident, although this can sometimes limit your ability to file a suit against the other driver.
Know Your Policy Limits
An unfortunate reality of car insurance is that your car will only be covered up to the limits of your policy, which can cause a serious problem if your damages are more expensive than what your policy covers.
For instance, if your car suffers $11,000 worth of damages and the other driver’s policy only covers $5,000 worth of damages, you will be left to pay for the leftover $6,000 completely out of pocket. To protect yourself against these financially precarious circumstances, it is a good idea to make sure you have an adequate level of collision coverage built into your insurance policy.
Dealing with a Total Loss Designation
One of the most unfortunate circumstances following a serious car accident is having your car declared a total loss. What this means, in simple terms, is that the cost of repairing your car is greater than the car’s value. If your car is deemed a total loss, your insurer will generally give you the market value of your car. In a total loss case, there are a couple of complicating factors, as you would expect.
First, it’s possible that the market value of your car will be less than what’s remaining on your car loan, meaning you’ll have to pay the rest of your loan, and purchase a new vehicle, totally out of your own finances. Secondly, your insurer will most likely take possession of your totaled car, meaning you won’t be able to recoup any of your losses on the secondary market.
It is possible, occasionally, to get your insurer to rescind the total loss designation, but it is very rare and often requires the help of a car accident lawyer.
Hire a Car Accident Lawyer
Having your car declared a total loss can be a very stressful situation, leaving you unsure how to move on after your accident. If you want to fight the insurer’s total loss decisions, you need legal advice from an excellent car accident lawyer from Heuser & Heuser, LLP.