Q: What is "diminished value" as it refers to a totaled car?

asked by on October 02, 2016

My car is totally wrecked. I have an insurance quote that is a little less than a retail amount, which is more than I thought I'd get. My friends say to go to a lawyer because I should get more than the base retail, in order to get a car better than the one that was wrecked (excellent repair history). They used the words "diminished value."

Hi, thanks for writing in. The insurance company can use "diminished value" for a number of reasons. The overall condition of the vehicle not including the wreck, above average mileage, etc. I would ask them what criteria they are using to determine "diminished value". Also, search the internet for vehicles for sale similar to yours - year, make, model, equipment, mileage, etc. and see what they are going for. I also recommend reviewing your insurance policy and verifying what your coverage stipulations are. Hope this helps and best of luck!

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