How does insurance decide when to total a car?

My car was in an accident. I want to know whether it's a total loss or not. How does insurance decide when to total a car?

Answer
To determine whether a car is totaled, car insurance companies look at the total cost of repairs versus the vehicle’s value.
The vehicle’s value is its actual cash value. Actual cash value is the cost of the vehicle minus depreciation.
If the total cost of repairs is more than what your vehicle is worth, your car insurance company will deem it a total loss. If this happens, you receive the actual cash value of the vehicle as settlement.
If the cost of repairs is less than your vehicle’s value, your insurance will typically pay for repairs.
If you have any questions about the claims process, you can always contact your claims adjuster or insurance company. Either should be happy to answer any questions you may have.
Should your insurance increase after your accident, try Jerry. Jerry is a personal insurance broker that lives in your pocket. Jerry gathers quotes from up to 50 of the top insurance providers to find you the best rate.
Emily Maracle
Answered on Oct 19, 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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