Can I sue an at-fault party for vehicle repairs if my insurance won't pay for them?

"My insurance company deemed my vehicle a total loss. They are valuing my car at $2000 and repairs are $3500. I can't afford a new car with $2000.

Can I sue the other drive to try and get the repair money?"

Answer
“When a car insurance company deems your vehicle a total loss, they determine the actual cash value of your vehicle. This number includes depreciation. If the cost to repair it is more than it’s worth, they’ll pay you the actual cash value.
If you pursue legal action against the other driver, you’d only get the actual cash value of your vehicle.
When your insurance pays out a claim, they try to recover costs from the at-fault driver’s insurance. This means they’re likely only going to pay what your insurance was willing to pay. If you do sue, the amount you take home may end up being even less after your legal fees.
If you want to keep your vehicle, you may be able to settle with your insurance company. You’ll likely receive less than the vehicle is worth, have to pay for the repairs out of pocket, and register your vehicle as salvage.”
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Emily Maracle
Answered on Jul 27, 2021
Emily Maracle is a car insurance specialist living in New York. Originally from the Pacific Northwest, she has a degree in English Literature and a background in customer service. She enjoys cooking, gardening, and living sustainably. In the future, she can't wait to upgrade to a hybrid or electric car.
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