If your vehicle is declared a “total loss,” it means that it would cost more to repair your car than to replace it with a similar car. It may sound as though your car would have to suffer some major damage in order for an insurance company to total it, but it’s actually a function of the car’s worth. For instance, minor damage to a five year old car might result in totaling the car, while major damage to a brand new car might not result in a total loss.
If it is determined that you have a “total loss,” you are entitled to receive what it costs you to replace your car. In other words, you have the right to be paid the full value of your car plus all applicable sales tax and tile transfer fees.
Your insurance company will arrange for a salvage company to pick up your vehicle, and arrange payment, if any, to the repair facility.
If your vehicle is repairable, you are entitled to have it restored to its pre-accident condition. You have the right to select your own collision repair shop. You do not have to give your repair to the lowest bidder.
Remember, we cannot declare your car a “total loss.” Even if your vehicle suffered unibody or frame damage, it is not automatically determined to be a “total loss.” Your insurance company will be part of the discussion to determine whether or not the vehicle should be repaired.