Calvin Smith Law - The Injury Lawyers

Will Your Macon Accident Attorney Get You a New Car if You Sue the Other Driver?

a Macon accident attorney will fight for the maximum settlement.

One of the common misconceptions about filing a car accident lawsuit is that you’ll get a new car if you win. That isn’t the way the law works. As your Macon accident attorney can explain, you are not entitled to a brand-new vehicle. As explained here, you will only be entitled to the fair market value of your car or SUV.

Most Accident Victims Suffer Some Damage to Their Vehicle

Even if you’re involved in a minor accident, there’s a good chance your vehicle will suffer some kind of damage. If you’re lucky, it will be limited to cosmetic damage. This can usually be repaired for a few thousand dollars.

However, there are other times when your car sustains heavy damage. It may be so bad that it isn’t worth trying to repair it. This is where you have to be careful. The insurance company may try to shortchange you when they assess the fair market value of your vehicle.

The Insurance Company Will Determine if Your Vehicle Was Totaled

One of the frustrating things about your car being damaged is that you don’t have a say in whether it’s declared totaled. Even if your mechanic provides an estimate saying that it will cost more to fix it than it’s worth, it won’t matter.

The insurance adjuster is the one who makes this determination. They will have someone from the insurance company assess the damage to your vehicle. Whatever their estimate is will serve as the basis for whether the car is deemed totaled.

Your Macon Injury Lawyer Can Argue It’s Totaled if It Would Cost More to Fix Than It’s Worth

If the insurance company decides that your car can be fixed, you have two options. You can just accept their decision and pay to get your car fixed. Just know that, depending on how bad the damage is, it may cost you money out of your pocket.

Your other option is to call a Macon accident attorney. If they disagree with the insurance adjuster’s assessment, they can get a second opinion. You can find an independent mechanic and ask them to provide you with an estimate.

If this estimate is drastically higher than the one done by the insurance company, you can appeal your claim. The last thing you want to do is receive a check from the insurance company that only covers half or two-thirds of the repair bill.

Your Macon Accident Attorney Can Only Demand the Fair Market Value

If you end up having to sue the other driver, you’ll need to list your damages in the initial complaint. For example, your Macon injury lawyer will demand some or all of the following:

  • Medical bills and future medical bills
  • Lost wages
  • Lost future income
  • Property damage
  • Pain and suffering

The important thing to remember is that your Macon accident attorney has to substantiate these damages.

your car will be evaluated at its fair market value.

For example, imagine that your car was destroyed in the accident. The insurance company only places a value of $5,000 on your car. However, your car was worth at least $12,000 at the time of the crash.

Your Macon accident attorney would have to appeal this appraisal. If the insurance carrier still refuses to increase the payoff for your vehicle, you may have to sue the other driver.

You Will Not Receive Enough Money to Buy a Brand-New Car or SUV

One thing our Macon injury lawyers express to our clients right away is that you shouldn’t expect a new car. Even if the car you were driving was only six months old, you wouldn’t receive the full value.

New cars lose a significant portion of their value when they leave the dealership. After six months have gone by, you would never get the full sale price for your vehicle. This is the case whether you were trading it in or selling it.

The same is true when it comes to your insurance company declaring your vehicle totaled.

You’re Entitled to the Fair Market Value at the Time of the Crash

Legally, you are only entitled to the fair market value of your vehicle. Typically, the insurance adjuster will consult something like the Kelly Blue Book to get the current value.

They will consider such factors as:

  • The make and model of your vehicle
  • The year it was made
  • How many miles were on the car at the time of the crash
  • The condition of the vehicle (poor, fair, good, excellent)
  • Whether the car had special options, such as greater horsepower, a security system, or Bose sound system

The interesting thing about determining a car’s fair market value is that two people can come up with totally different numbers. For example, if the insurance adjuster puts that your car was in fair condition but you say excellent, there would be a great disparity.

The Insurance Adjuster Will Determine the Fair Market Value

Unfortunately for you, it’s the insurance adjuster who makes this decision. As stated earlier, you won’t have much of a say in the matter. However, your Macon accident attorney can certainly challenge the assessed value.

What’s important to keep in mind is that there’s a good chance your Macon injury lawyer will settle your case. It may not matter all that much exactly what value is given to your car or SUV.

Don’t Wait Too Long to Meet with a Seasoned Macon Injury Lawyer

Our Macon injury lawyers have helped hundreds, if not thousands of clients in your position. For most people, their car represents more than dollars and cents. If you can get your car repaired, you would like to do that. However, there are times when it doesn’t make financial sense to repair your vehicle.

If your car has been destroyed in a motor vehicle accident, you will be entitled to damages. As long as your Macon accident attorney can prove the other driver was at fault, you should be fairly compensated.

Contact our office today so we can schedule your free, initial consultation. The insurance carrier will have a whole team of lawyers on their side. You need to have someone in your corner too.

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