You've Totaled your Vehicle Now What?

Know your options, do your research, and remember you are entitle to ACV (Actual Cash Value)

Tell Them NO!!!


A claims representative may request you release your vehicle to them before an agreement is reached.

 1.  Do not allow the claims representative to move your vehicle before you have agreed on a settlement, and have it in writing.

You Will Lose Your Leverage Over The Insurance Company!

2.  This may be the only leverage you have over the Insurance Company to pay what they rightly owe you.

Accruing Storage Fees Ensures Adjusters Are More Prompt With Settlement!

3.  While your vehicle is sitting at the body shop or towing service lot, it is accruing storage fees.  These daily fees ensure adjusters are more prompt with reaching a settlement

Do Not Allow The Insurance Company To Scare You Into Settling For A Low-Ball Offer.

4.  Once you release your vehicle to them, they will move it to their lot without having to pay storage, which could allow them to take a longer amount of time to reach an agreement.

The Insurance Company Owes You The Retail Value Based On The Condition Of Your Vehicle.

5.  Through the years, we have seen many people shorted by 20-30% on their settlement, because they released their vehicle to the insurance company before reaching an agreement.  

Tips for Negotiating the Actual Cash Value


Here are some tips for helping drivers to figure out how to get a decent deal from an insurer.

  1. Find out about actual cash value. The term itself just refers to how much a vehicle is worth in sale, but it's the way actual cash value is used that leads to some problems with negotiating a fair deal when you need to collect from an auto insurance company after a wreck.
  2. Figure out how your insurer defines actual cash value. Part of the problem in negotiating a good actual cash value for a vehicle is that each insurer uses their own proprietary methods to get what they give you as ACV. In order to provide your own counter-estimate, you'll want to know as much as possible about how they came to their figures.
  3. Use online car valuation sites to get a good actual cash value estimate. Online car value sites provide solid, well defined, and commonly recognized value estimates for nearly any vehicle on the American roadway. Take a look at sites like the Kelley Blue Book company site to get what many would consider a fair resale price for your vehicle.
  4. Look for local examples in classifieds or elsewhere. Another way to provide solid valuation evidence is to look for ongoing deals from local dealerships for used cars similar to yours. You can use the sale prices offered by the dealerships as an indication of actual cash value for your vehicle.
  5. Include information on features and other value conditions. Low mileage, excellent interior and exterior condition, and handy features should be pointed out to your insurer as "value points." Make sure they know about features that you have added to your vehicle after purchase, such as enhanced sound systems, that may add value.
  6. Stay involved. Negotiating actual cash value, just like a lot of other insurance documentation, is mostly just the process of communicating and staying in touch with the insurer to eventually wrangle out a deal. Those who give up easy will find themselves settling for the lowest possible value and partial payouts from insurers who are slow to comply with their responsibilities in the event of a claim.

Take advantage of these simple steps to claim what's yours in a situation where you find your insurer has miscalculated the actual cash value of your vehicle.

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