Yikes! The unthinkable happened! You have been involved in an automobile accident. What do you do now? First on the list is to contact your insurance agent. They will determine the amount of damage and will advise you how to proceed. But what if they say your car has been “totaled”?

It is inevitable that as active drivers, an accident will happen sooner or later. What does it mean if the appraiser decides that your car has been totaled? The math is pretty simple. When the cost to repair your car exceeds the value of the car, insurance companies don’t consider it worth repairing. It is then considered a total loss. Insurance adjusters calculate the car’s cash value at the time of the accident, factoring in depreciation (20% the first year, 10% for each following year up to five years) and also take into consideration the condition of the car, the mileage and other competitive factors to determine the car’s current value. Your vehicle may be worth more in some markets than others. For instance, a truck will be worth more in a rural environment than in the city. Agents also take into consideration the resale of parts and metal that is of salvage value.

When the vehicle is seen as a total loss, you have the choice of accepting cash value for the vehicle or retaining it for salvage yourself. Insurance companies will deduct the salvage value from the payment claim and you are free to keep the damaged vehicle.

There are two basic types of vehicle coverage:

  • Collision policies cover you when you are hit by another car or overturn your vehicle.
  • Comprehension coverage is for such things as vandalism, fire or hitting an animal on the road.

Once adjusters have determined the actual damage to your vehicle and whether or not it is worthy of repair, agents, such as Penner and Fink, can help take the hassle and confusion out of deciding what is best for you. Contact us today for your vehicle insurance needs! Know you are covered if that accident happens!