Damaged Cars and Diminished Value Claims If your car is now worth less money than it was before you had an accident you make be able to make a claim for the vehicle’s diminished value. This claim is based on the notion that a potential buyer will not pay as much money for a vehicle that has been substantially damaged, (Despite any repairs that have been made) than they would for a car that’s similar but has not been damaged in the same way. This is why a claim such as this is often called a ‘Diminished resale value claim’.
Substantial Damage to your Car In order to qualify for a diminished value claim, your vehicle must have sustained substantial damage, and have no further history of damage as a result of a collision. It could also work in your favor if your car was a new one. In most parts of the United States, you should be able to recover your car’s diminished value from an insurance company, whether it’s your own or the at-fault driver’s insurance company. However, in Kansas, Georgia, and North Carolina you can make a claim such as this against your insurance company. If you have sustained an injury as a result of a car accident that was another driver’s fault, please speak to a personal injury lawyer as you may have a personal injury claim. Three Types of Diminished Value There are three types of diminished value:
Inherent: This is the reduction in the value of your vehicle that occurs even it is has been well repaired. Insurance related: This occurs when the insurance who paid to have your car repaired used inferior or bad quality parts that resulted in your vehicle’s loss of value, as compared to other similar cars. Repair related: This occurs when the repair shop or facility does not complete the repairs properly. To Collect your Diminished Value Claim To collect your diminished value claim you will first need a diminished value report that has been written by an expert. You can usually obtain such a report from an expert in your local area. Although many people are tempted to submit a letter that has been written by a used car dealer in the hope that it will be considered suitable, unfortunately, this will not suffice. If you are unsure as to who will pay for the damage to your vehicle, please read our article about who should pay you, and how much compensation you should receive.