Legal Question in Personal Injury in North Carolina

My car was hit by a car that rolled of a hill while at the dealers waiting to be fixed. One of the employee's left another car outta gear and hit my car... I still owe 10k for my car, this will bring the value down (carfax) it was about 6k worth of damage... What shall I ask for , anything above repair ? Or any suggestions ?

Asked on 9/13/11, 3:32 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys

You can get the cost of repairs for the damage that the rolling car caused to your car, the reasonable value for the loss of use of your car while it was being repaired (usually the insurer will arrange fro a rental vehicle for you) and diminished value.

It does not matter what you owe on your car; it matters what it was worth and what damage was done. If the cost to fix your car is 75% of the fair market value of the vehicle, then the insurer will only pay for what the car is worth. The car will be considered a total loss. If the car is driveable and you think you can get it fixed for what they are paying or less, you may want to let them total the car, buy it back for salvage, get it fixed and drive it forever until the wheels fall off as it will have a branded (salvage) title. Of course, you will still owe the balance on the loan which you will have to keep paying. Otherwise, you would have to have the insurer pay your car lender, be without wheels or buy yourself a a cheap used car, and then pay off any balance remaining on the old wrecked car. It isn't fair, but that is the way it is.

If the cost to fix the car is less than 75% of the fair market value, then the car will be repaired and you will get a rental vehicle to compensate you for the loss of use of your car (or the equivalent monetary value). You can also ask for diminished value. You have 30 days after the repairs are done to get the dealer to certify what your car would have been worth as a trade-in unwrecked versus what it is now worth since it was repaired. The difference between the 2 figures is diminished value.

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Answered on 9/14/11, 11:50 am

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