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What Can You Do If Your Car is Destroyed by a North Carolina Auto Accident?

Jan 5, 2017 - Car Accidents by

car accident attorney in Charlotte NC

When you are the victim of an auto accident in North Carolina, you’ve got a lot of things on your mind, from recovering from your injuries to establishing liability and getting your property damage repaired or replaced. If your vehicle is unusable after the accident, you may be wondering what your options are, now. How are you supposed to get to and from work, doctors appointments, and legal appointments without being able to use your vehicle? Fortunately, there are some options available to you.

Can You Get A Rental Car to Temporarily Replace Your Vehicle After an Accident?
One option for transportation after an auto accident makes your vehicle unusable is to get a rental vehicle. There are couple of ways to do this. If the at fault driver has accepted responsibility for the accident, then they are responsible for providing a rental car and their auto insurance coverage may provide this. You are eligible for such rental car coverage from the date that the accident occurred up until a given time period, based on whether or not the vehicle can be repaired.

In cases where the vehicle is totaled (cannot be repaired or is more expensive to repair than replace), the insurance company may offer you compensation for the value of the car. They are then no longer responsible for funding the rental car, though they may do so for a few more days to ensure that you have time to receive the money for the vehicle. In cases where the vehicle can be repaired, the auto insurance company will have to pay for the rental car until the vehicle has been repaired.

In cases where the at fault driver and his or her auto insurance policy does not accept responsibility for the accident, you may be able to get coverage for a rental vehicle through your own auto insurance policy. This will depend on the coverage that you have, but most collision coverage policies also offer rental reimbursement to cover any need you may have for a rental vehicle.

Limitations to Rental Vehicle Coverage after a North Carolina Auto Accident
There are some limitations to be aware of when it comes to rental car reimbursement coverage and liability insurance that provides for rental car coverage. If you get collision deductible waivers or incidental damage waivers through the rental vehicle provider, then these won’t be covered by the auto insurance policy of the at fault driver or your own rental car reimbursement coverage. You also have to have collision coverage on the rental car, which may have to be paid at a daily rate if you don’t already have a collision coverage policy. This will not be covered by the at-fault driver’s insurance either.

What If You Don’t Have Use of Your Vehicle and Don’t Get A Rental Car?
In cases where you don’t have use of your vehicle, but you don’t request a rental vehicle, you can still seek compensation for the time when you were unable to use your car. The value will be determined based on what the cost of a rental vehicle would have been if you had obtained one. If you damaged car is not your primary transportation and you can get by without a rental vehicle, then you can still seek this kind of compensation for the loss of use of the vehicle until it is compensated or repaired.

When Are Vehicle Damages Determined As a Total Loss of the Vehicle?
A total loss of your vehicle is when the cost that would be needed to complete the repairs is greater than 75% of the vehicle’s fair market value. If this is the case for your vehicle, you can either release it to the insurance carrier in exchange for fair market value compensation, or you can salvage it. If you salvage the vehicle, then you will get money for this, and the insurance company will provide you with the fair market value, minus the amount obtained through salvaging that vehicle.

To learn more about the value of your vehicle damages, and your options for recovering compensation for those damages and coverage for a rental vehicle, contact the dedicated North Carolina auto accident attorneys at Brown, Moore & Associates to schedule a free consultation and have all of your questions answered.