When a vehicle is a total loss and loan is more than valued, how do i get my money down back to put towards new vehicle

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When a vehicle is a total loss and loan is more than valued, how do i get my money down back to put towards new vehicle

Vehicle is totaled out no fault of mine, and the at fault party has no insurance. I purchased the new vehicle 8 months ago, with the knowledge that it would loose value right away. I have a 6 year loan, knowing that after that time, truck would be worth nothing. So the decision to buy new was based on that my deposit money would be spread over that six year life of the vehicle. I am now forced to buy a new truck and come up with that deposit money again, 64 months early. I feel that I should be getting 89 of that deposit money back due to being forced to do this process over again, prematurely.

Asked on August 2, 2017 under Accident Law, Illinois

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

Unfortunately for you, all the law gives you when property (including a vehicle) is destroyed is it's then-current fair market (or "blue book") value--that is, what the thing was worth at the moment it was destroyed. What you paid is irrelevant, since what you pay can have little or nothing to do with the value of the item:
1) If you buy  a car over time (finance it), you will pay more than you would pay the same exact car if you paid cash--cost varies by how you pay for the item.
2) Some people negotiate better deals than others.
3) Some people might be gifted a car by a family member, or buy one at a very favorable cost from friends or family.
4) Etc.
Cost varies, and is not necessarily related to value, so the law ignores cost and looks to the more consistent, more easily verified value instead. So that you put more money down that someone else might have is irrelevant. You are entitled to the car's then-current value, even if that leaves you in a disadvantageous position vis-a-vis buying a new car.


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