When does insurance companies total vehicles?

sammi_josammi_jo Member Posts: 2
edited June 2017 in Nissan
I was involved in a 4 car pile up on the interstate in January, The car behind me got rear ended and she rear ended me and I hit someone from behind. There was minor damage to my front bumper, however they replaced the front bumper and the whole rear end needed to be replaced. My car a Nissan Altima SL 2015 fully loaded with 20,200 miles had $10,500 damage to repair with frame damage. The value of my vehicle at the time was $20,500. My insurance company fixed the vehicle, however third party insurance has taken responsibility for the accident. I am now trying to determine whether they should have totaled the vehicle or if the $2k diminished value Geico is trying to offer me will be sufficient. Geico claims they have compared my vehicle to two others in my area zip 23669 with damage and these vehicles are both selling for $19k and thats how they determined the DV. They however did not tell me what the total amounts of the damage was on the vehicles they used to compare mine to. Should this vehicle be totaled and if so, can I buy it back from the insurance company? What would a reasonable amount be to pay for it once totaled? What is a reasonable amount to accept for diminished value? KBB says excellent trade should be $15,169, fair trade should be $13,590, retail should be $19,679, whole sale should be $16,776 and FPP should be $18,979, NADA clean trade should be $17,400, rough trade should be $15,075, retail should be $20,000, Black Book clean trade should be $17,200, rough trade should be $13,980, retail clean should be $20,700, WHSALE clean should be $16,900, and WHSALE avg should be $16,100. TIA for your responses, your help is greatly appreciated.


  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    Well it's been fixed right? So it can't be totaled and you can't buy it back. You are, however, entitled to a DV claim against the 3rd party insurance company, and up to 25% of "book" would not be an unreasonable request.

    Insurance companies *hate* DV claims and they will fight you, so you will have to get your own appraiser who specializes in DV claims and submit that appraisal, and see what happens. It's possible you could squeeze more than the $2K offer for DV, but they could also stonewall you. If they came up with a counter-offer in the $4K range, I would consider that well done on your part.

    Really, your car is not that new nor in the luxury class, so the severity of the DV is debatable.

    Many people aren't even offered a DV settlement. They have to fight for every penny, so you are in a sense somewhat ahead of the game here in that the insurance company recognizes the need for a DV supplement.
  • sammi_josammi_jo Member Posts: 2
    Thanks for your response Mr_Shiftright. When you say 25% of book what does that mean? Is it 25% of trade value, whole sale or retail and with this kind of damage is this vehicle considered rough, average or clean?
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