Car is totaled and insurance co. Is paying about 8,000.00 les than what I owe

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Car is totaled and insurance co. Is paying about 8,000.00 les than what I owe

The accident was someone else’s fault. Can I go after there insurance for the difference of payoff of my car to what the insurance is paying me

Asked on August 15, 2017 under Accident Law, Pennsylvania

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

No, you cannot, if you have been been paid the then-current fair market (or "blue book") value of your car. All you are entitled to get, whether from the at-fault party (or their insurer) or your own is what the car was worth, not what you paid for it, which after all, varies tremendously and may have no relationship to the car's value or what it is worth. If you finance the car, you will pay for than its worth, for example, due to interest and  financing charges; on the other hand, some people buy cars at discounts from friends or family or are even given cars. All those people--the ones who pay more, and the ones who get a great deal--receive the same compensation, the car's value, which provides a relatively consistent and somewhat objectively determinable benchmark for compensation. So if you have received the car's fair market value, you have been properly compensated and cannot sue for more; if you want to protect yourself from this situation in the future, you can buy "GAP" insurance to cover the difference between fair market value and payoff amount.


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