In a car crash in Augusta, the minimum loss you are likely to suffer is damage to your vehicle. This legally falls under the category of property damage, for which an Augusta car accident lawyer can help you recover compensatory damages.
It is important to note that damage to your vehicle covers more than the cost of having it repaired. It also pertains to the drop in the market value of your vehicle, which can be quite significant after an accident. This typically applies when your car is not deemed totaled and you get to keep it after having it repaired. Here is a look at what devalues a car after a crash, the average loss in value, and the diminished value insurance claim that you can file.
How an Accident Devalues a Car?
When your car is involved in an accident, it may suffer damage ranging from minor to serious. Minor damage may include a broken side mirror or a small dent. Major damage can range from boxed in doors to wrecked front or back section.
In either case, you will likely be able to have your vehicle repaired if you have auto insurance. However, the accident will leave a mark on your vehicle. In the case of major damage, the crash may weaken the structural integrity of the vehicle. Even when minor damage is caused, the crash itself becomes a part of the Vehicle History Report of your car.
A potential buyer can use a service like Carfax to look up whether your vehicle has been involved in any accidents in the past. As the search will reveal the crash which damaged your vehicle, you will have to sell your vehicle at a value lower than the average market value.
Average Loss in Value
Your vehicle depreciates in value every year. This is true even when your vehicle remains in mint condition. The average depreciation per year is 10% to 15%. When the vehicle suffers a crash, this figure grows. After an accident, the average annual depreciation of the vehicle becomes 20% to 35%. So if the actual cost of your vehicle was $20,000, an accident and a year later, its value may be $13,000 to $16,000. The value will be even less if the vehicle suffered extensive damage in the crash.
The actual loss in value of your vehicle depends on a number of factors. These include the following:
- Make and model of your vehicle
- Mileage of the vehicle at the time of the crash
- Nature of crash and severity of the damages
- The extent and quality of the repairs
The make and model of the vehicle plays a central role in the amount it will shed after a crash. A brand new vehicle from a high-end manufacturer like Tesla is going to lose more in value, compared to a more low-end model such as Kia Forte.
What is a Diminished Value Insurance Claim?
When your vehicle loses value after an accident, it has suffered a diminished value. Legally, the loss in the value of the vehicle is covered by the auto insurance. You can claim this loss in damages by filing a diminished value insurance claim with your own if the crash was caused by your fault. Your insurer may cite your fault as an excuse to turn down your claim but a good lawyer can help you negotiate successfully with the insurer.
If the crash was caused by the at-fault driver’s insurance company, you have better chances of recovering compensation in lieu of property damage. The law mandates that the insurer must pay for such loss in the value of a property.
If the at-fault drive had little or no insurance, you can still file a diminished value insurance claim with your own insurance company. In such a case, the claim will be filed under your uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage, if you carry one with your auto insurance policy.
Hiring a Reliable Augusta Car Accident Lawyer
If you have suffered an accident in Augusta with damage to your vehicle, you may be able to file a diminished value insurance claim. However, it is important to discuss your car crash claim with a good Augusta car accident lawyer before you file for such damages. Here at Ted Greve & Associates, we work with you to recover the maximum amount of compensation from the at-fault party. Even when you are filing with your insurer, we negotiate on your behalf to secure the best deal. Reach out to us today to discuss your case with our lawyers in detail.