Property Damage In A West Palm Beach Car Accident

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Legally reviewed by Alex Uriarte on July 13, 2022 Alex Uriarte is a member of the 1-800-Injured network.

After a car accident, victims typically have the ability to seek compensation from either their own Personal Injury Protection (PIP) policy or from the at-fault driver’s insurance depending on the type of damages. For property damage, victims will likely only be able to seek compensation from the at-fault driver’s insurance company.

Compensatory damages — the damages a victim is legally entitled to recover — are divided into two distinct parts: economic damages, and non-economic damages. Economic damages are those that have a specific dollar amount attached to them, such as medical bills and lost wages. Non-economic damages are more difficult to quantify and include items such as pain and suffering, mental anguish, and emotional distress.

For the sake of this article we will focus solely on economic damages, specifically property damages.

Common Property Damages in a West Palm Beach Car Crash

The following types of property damage are commonly claimed after car accidents:

Cost to Repair or Replace Your Vehicle

If your vehicle is damaged in the accident, you have the right to seek reimbursement from the at-fault driver’s insurance company for the cost to repair or replace it. However, even something as simple as submitting an invoice for repair costs can result in a frustrating claims process as the insurer picks apart your claim and attempts to avoid paying for as much as possible.

If your vehicle is considered a total loss — meaning the cost of repairs would exceed the value of the vehicle — you are entitled to receive the actual cash value of your vehicle from the insurance company.

The actual cash value is typically determined by using industry-standard valuation tools, such as Kelley Blue Book or the National Automobile Dealers Association Official Used Car Guide. You may find that the cash value of your vehicle is much different than the cost to replace your vehicle, but working with an attorney can help you get the most accurate valuation.

These valuations will take into account the make, model, and year of your vehicle as well as its mileage, overall condition, and any aftermarket additions or customization. The insurance company will also deduct for depreciation, which is the loss in value your vehicle incurred simply by virtue of being used over time.

Diminished Value of Repaired Vehicle

Even if your vehicle is repaired, it may never be the same as it was prior to the accident. This is because once a vehicle has been in an accident, even if it is repaired to its pre-accident condition, it will always have a diminished value. The amount of diminished value will depend on a number of factors such as the severity of the accident, the make and model of your vehicle, and whether or not the vehicle was repaired properly.

Your attorney can work with industry experts to determine the diminished value of your vehicle and seek reimbursement from the at-fault driver’s insurance company.

The Cost Of Renting a Car While Your Vehicle Is Being Repaired

While your vehicle is being repaired, you may need to rent a car for the duration of the repairs. Additionally, you may need to rent a car while you are waiting for the insurance company to declare your vehicle as “totaled,” meaning that you will be compensated for the cost of a replacement vehicle. The cost of the rental car can be included in your property damage claim.

If your injuries prevent you from operating a motor vehicle during your recovery, you may be able to seek reimbursement for the cost of transportation, such as a taxi or Uber.

Other Property Damage

In addition to damage to your vehicle, you may also be able to seek reimbursement for other property that was damaged in the accident. For example, if your phone was destroyed when your car was hit, you can include the cost of a new phone in your property damage claim.

You may also be able to seek reimbursement for the cost of repairs or replacement of any other personal property that was damaged in the accident. However, it is important to keep in mind that you will need to have receipts or some other evidence of the cost of the repairs or replacement.

How To Effectively Request Compensation For Property That Was Damaged In an Accident

The first step in seeking reimbursement for property damage is to file a claim with the at-fault driver’s insurance company. This can be a frustrating and time-consuming process, especially if the insurance company denies your claim or attempts to lowball you on the amount of compensation you are owed.

It is important to keep in mind that insurance companies are in the business of making money and not paying out claims. Therefore, it is important to be prepared when you file your claim and to have all of the evidence you need to support your claim.

Some of the evidence you will need to include with your claim are:

  • Photos of the damage to your vehicle
  • An estimate of the repairs or replacement
  • A rental car agreement, if you rent a car while your vehicle was being repaired
  • Receipts for any other property that was damaged in the accident

Make sure that you request any comments or statements from the adjuster in writing, especially if they tell you that they will reimburse you for certain damages.

Working with an attorney is the best way to ensure that you are working towards appropriate compensation for all of the property damage you incurred as a result of the accident. 1-800-Injured is an attorney and medical referral service, which means we can connect you with an attorney for your case who will fight to get you the compensation you deserve.

Contact 1-800-Injured For a Free Consultation With a West Palm Beach Car Accident Attorney

If you are having trouble getting the insurance company to provide you with a fair settlement, or if your claim has been denied, you may need to consult with an experienced car accident attorney. An attorney can help you deal with the insurance company and get the compensation you deserve for your property damage.

If you have been in a car accident and sustained property damage, 1-800-Injured can help you get in touch with an experienced attorney who can help you recover the compensation you deserve. Call 1-800-Injured today for a free consultation with a car accident attorney in West Palm Beach. 1-800-Injured is an attorney and medical referral service.