If you have been in an auto accident you may be able to make a diminished value claim for the lost value of your vehicle. The Personal Injury attorneys at the Fernandez & Hernandez know how to make a diminished value claim.
When a vehicle has been in an accident it has an accident history or record. A crash history may reduce the value of the vehicle. The car may have problems caused by the crash.
You may be able to get the diminished value of your vehicle after an auto accident. Florida does not have uninsured motorist coverage for diminished value and you cannot submit a diminished value claim if you were the at-fault party in an accident.
Diminished value may happen in three ways:
- Repair-related Diminished Value
- Immediate Diminished Value
- Inherent Diminished Value
Repair-Related Diminished Value
Repair-related diminished value is the loss of value because the repair shop was unable to perfectly repair the vehicle. In other words, because the vehicle is not perfectly repaired, the vehicle is worth less after the repairs. For example, sometimes a car frame cannot be perfectly straightened.
Immediate Diminished Value
Immediate diminished value is the difference in resale value before the damage occurred and the resale value after the damage occurred. In other words, the insurance company may only pay for cheap parts and repairs leaving the car in less than normal condition. For example, sometimes a insurance company may only pay for aftermarket parts.
Inherent Diminished Value
Inherent diminished value is the amount of resale value that has been reduced because the car has been in an accident, even if the repairs are perfect and the best parts were used. For example, if you wanted to buy a car and found two vehicles that were exactly the same, but one was in an accident, you probably would expect to pay less for the vehicle that was in the accident.
Property Damage Liability Insurance
Florida drivers must carry two types of insurance:
- Personal Injury Protection (PIP) liability insurance; and
- Property Damage Liability (PDL) insurance.
Personal Injury Protection (PIP)
PIP insurance pays you and your family when you are in a crash. PIP pays you for medical expenses whether or not you are at fault for the accident.
Property Damage Liability (PDL)
PDL insurance pays the other party for their property damage if you are at fault for the crash. If you are in a car accident and you are not at fault, the other party’s PDL insurance pays for your losses, including payment for the diminished value of your vehicle because it has been in a crash. You will need to prove your diminished value loss. Your attorney can work with experts to put a dollar figure on your vehicle’s diminished value.
If you were not at fault in an accident, the at-fault party or their insurance company owes you for your loss. After a car accident, you should call an experienced car accident attorney to make sure your diminished value claim is correct. Dealing with a car accident claim is complex and can be stressful. Work with a lawyer to get the best outcome. A professional vehicle appraiser can provide you with the documentation you need to get the payment you deserve. Do not let the insurance company tell you what your loss is. Hiring experienced professionals will help you to settle the claim fast.
If you have been in an auto accident and you were not at fault, you can make a diminished value claim for the lost value of your vehicle. If you need help getting paid for your loss, call Tampa Personal Injury Attorney, Martin J. Hernandez of Fernandez & Hernandez at 813-229-5353.