6. What am I owed after an accident?

As a result of damages sustained in a covered loss and a claim made against an insurer, the insurer is obligated to provide for either the repair or replacement of the damaged property.

Normally the insurer is given the authority to make the decision to either repair or replace the damaged property. Once they make the decision they are held to a level of “pre-loss” condition and/or “actual cash value” (ACV).  Should the insurer elect to repair a damaged vehicle, they owe the costs to restore the damaged vehicle to its pre-loss condition to the best of reasonable, human ability.

Should the insurer elect to deem the damaged vehicle to be a total-loss, they are obligated to provide replacement or actual cash value enabling the claimant to purchase another vehicle equal to the value of the damaged vehicle, immediately prior to the loss. The rules of indemnification are clear in as much as what is owed is what was possessed just prior to the loss, no better and no worse.

Additionally, you may be entitled to sales tax, tag and title transfer costs in the event your vehicle is determined to be a total loss.

You may be entitled to ‘loss of use’ (temporary substitute vehicle) during the time required to make repair; or, seek a replacement vehicle from the at-fault party, their insurer, or as may be provided by coverage within your personal insurance policy.

Category: DV FAQ

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