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A car accident these days often means that a vehicle is apt to be totaled. In fact, the number of complete losses following accidents continues to rise over the past several years with one out of every seven accidents resulting in total loss. Total losses are those cars that cannot be repaired to still be considered safe or that cannot be repaired for less than its total worth. Those who find that this has happened to them should follow the three steps below to get back on their feet and back into a new ride after totaling their old cars.
First, individuals will need to contact their insurance companies to let them know what has happened and to start the filing process. Once the company has declared the vehicle a total loss, it will need to determine the vehicle’s value. Those who have gap insurance will be able to cover the difference between what the car is worth and how much they still owe a financing company. The company should then write out a settlement check, which can be used for purchasing a new car. This check will not include the deductible that the individual will be required to pay.
Chances are that the settlement check will not cover the entire cost of a new vehicle unless the individual is covered by a company offering replacement coverage. Therefore, to buy a new car will require expert budgeting and looking into finance options. Financing rates will depend on one’s credit score as well as on the term length chosen. To increase the budget for car shopping, one will need to look for ways to cut monthly expenses or to increase income, possibly by picking up a temporary job for a few months.
Some individuals may feel that their insurance companies did not properly cover them, did not offer enough settlement money or did not cover any injuries that they may have sustained during the accident. If this person cannot get any satisfaction by dealing directly with the company, he or she will want to look into taking legal action using an independent attorney, such as one from Clearfield & Kofsky. It’s important to work with legal professionals who can help direct you to find answers to your questions.
It can be difficult to learn that one’s vehicle has been totaled. However, by knowing the legal and financial steps to take in these scenarios, individuals can find themselves back on the road in a new ride without a huge hit to their bank accounts. A car crash can leave a big impact on your life, but it doesn’t have to leave a bigger impact on your life. By following the tips above you can get your feet back under you and move forward with your life. Those who have been injured through negligence or who believe that they have not been treated fairly by their insurance companies should seek legal counsel.