Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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UPDATED: Nov 1, 2011

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Insurance Question from Knoxville, TN

Asked on 11/01/2011

Insurance company problem I was hit head on on the interstate doing 50 MPH which totaled my 2007 Honda Civic. It was not my fault, and the other insurance company has offered me right at NADA value for my car. The amount isn't enough and I will be out money from my own pocket to replace what I lost, as many people deal with, but there was also personal injury involved. I denied the offer that was made, asking for enough to at least replace what I lost (I sent multiple listings for similar cars for them to review) but the company has now refused to pay my medical bill and canceled the rental car. What should I do?

Answer given on November 03, 2011

When a car is involved in a collision and is considered a total loss, the insurance company will use various sources to determine the value of the car. Often the value of the car for insurance purposes does not reflect your value of the car since insurance companies use actual cash value rather than “replacement cost”. The NADA book, gold book and local resources are the general basis of determining the value of the car. It is your responsibility to prove the value of your car is higher than what is being offered. Local listings from the internet or local auto dealers would be acceptable evidences. However, these things must be local values, not something elsewhere in the country. Your adjuster seems to be standing firm on the damages. You should contact a supervisor to try to resolve this. This needs to be done quickly, since rental car coverage has been cancelled. That coverage was cancelled since the adjuster feels the claim has been settled and will not continue to provide for a rental car. It is not their responsibility to keep you in the rental car simply because you haven’t gotten a replacement car.The medical payments should be separately handled and the insurance company usually waits until the entire claim is settled before they will make a payment for your injuries.


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