WHAT YOUR INSURANCE COMPANY DOES NOT WANT YOU TO KNOW ABOUT DIMINISHED VALUE
May 5, 2018
It is fairly well known that most insurance companies are not particularly eager to pay out diminished value claims when a vehicle is involved in an accident. Therefore, most insurance companies attempt to make the diminished value claim process difficult and they also tend to pay a lesser amount than what the amount of a vehicle’s diminished value actually is worth. Below contains some facts about diminished value that insurance companies try to hide from individuals.
Insurance companies want individuals to believe that a diminished value claim is really not worth pursuing. This is because by avoiding paying these claims, insurance companies end up saving millions upon millions of dollars each year. Most individuals, however, end up being successful in recovering their losses when going forth with a diminished value claim.
Insurance companies will also claim that a particular state law does not allow individuals to file diminished value claims – this information is also incorrect. Nearly every state allows individuals to file diminished value claims. Insurance companies will simply say whatever they can, including giving out misinformation, in order to avoid paying out diminished value claims.
Insurance companies would prefer that individuals use their adjusters to estimate the extent of damage to their vehicle. However, insurance adjusters will oftentimes underestimate the extent of damage to a vehicle as well as the costs of fixing the damage. Instead, individuals should hire an impartial expert to accurately calculate the amount of a vehicle’s diminished value as a result of an accident.
Sometimes insurance companies will claim that a vehicle was repaired properly, and therefore has not acquired any diminished value. In actuality, this is not the case, because inherent diminished value, which is oftentimes used in court, is calculated using the assumption that a vehicle has been properly repaired. Regardless of the quality of the repair, a vehicle will still be worth less than it was before the accident occurred.
Most insurance companies want individuals to believe that they do not have a legitimate diminished value claim if they wish to keep their damaged vehicle, because they have not actually realized a loss. This is not necessarily the case. If an individual has evidence of loss, and their post-repair expert has thoroughly documented why the vehicle is worth less, then individuals should be able to carry out their diminished value claims successfully.
Insurance companies may also place a high burden of proof on the accident victim, or purposely delay an individual’s diminished value claim in order to try and get out of paying the claim. With the help of a diminished value attorney, individuals will be able to successfully obtain their claims because even the threat of litigation frightens insurance companies, since the litigation process is extremely expensive.
In cases where an individual’s vehicle has suffered structural damage in an accident, the vehicle cannot be subsequently sold as a “certified used vehicle.” Most insurance companies do not acknowledge the fact that structurally damaged vehicles can lose their inherent value by up to forty percent, which means that individuals may lose a lot of money when they go to resell their cars.
Individuals are allowed to file a separate diminished claim even if the insurance company has already repaired their vehicle. Nearly all insurance companies do not disclose this fact, and most individuals do not know about it.
Insurance companies’ direct repair facilities should be avoided when individuals are getting their damaged vehicles repaired, because these types of shops minimally repair vehicles in order to save the insurance companies money. If individuals want a high quality repair job, they should seek out an appropriate/certified repair shop.
Most individuals are unaware of insurance related diminished value, which results in a loss in vehicle market value because of certain insurance claims practices. Specifically, the insurance carrier may fail to pay to repair a flaw or defect listed on the repair estimate because it is deemed as too expensive or not necessary.
Because collecting diminished value from an insurance company can be difficult and lengthy, individuals should strongly consider hiring a diminished value lawyer. Even though diminished value laws have long been established by the law, the actual claim process varies depending on the state and each individual case. If individuals want adequate compensation for their vehicle’s diminished value, then hiring a diminished value attorney is their best bet.
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