Insurance companies are well aware of diminished value, but will rarely tell you. Instead, the insurance company cuts a check for the cost of repairs and as far as most people know they’ve been made whole. It’s only later when you try to sell your vehicle that you realize the loss of value caused by the accident. A vehicle with structural damage can no longer be sold as a “certified used vehicle”.
The good news is that under Florida law, if you were not at fault in the accident, the at-fault party’s insurance company is liable to you for the diminished value of your vehicle after the accident. Even if you’ve already settled your property damage claim with the insurance company, you can still demand to be compensated for the diminished value of your vehicle.
Be prepared for the insurance company to fight your claim for diminished value. Some insurers will go as far as to tell you that there is no such thing as diminished value, or may also tell you that the diminished value is some lesser amount they calculated.
At SouthFloridaCarAppraisers we provide you with a Diminished Value Appraisal and guide you on how to make your claim.
For those who are unable to recoup their diminished value claim, turning to the courts is an option. For diminished value claims under $5,000, it’s Small Claims Court. For over $5,000 it’s County Court.