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Car Accident Information Center

Car Accident Lawyers

Fort Lauderdale Attorneys: Lost Value of Car After Auto Accident - Diminished Value Claim Florida

From a simple scrape to a head-on collision, cars simply aren't designed for contact which means it normally leads to costly damage. As soon as a car is involved in an accident, its value will decrease instantly and even repairs won’t restore it to the same levels as before the accident. Unfortunately, this is why negligent driving can be so frustrating for the innocent party. If you’ve recently been in this situation, you may be entitled to diminished value claim compensation because of the lost value of the car after the accident..

Despite many areas of law being simplified in recent years, obtaining damages for the diminished value of the property is still very confusing. For this reason, we highly recommend talking to a professional auto accident lawyer. At The Injury Firm, for example, we’ve helped many innocent drivers get compensation after property damage and we can utilize this experience to help you too.

Diminished Value Claim Florida 

When your vehicle has been damaged by the negligence of another, it may be worthless when you attempt to sell it. Carfax, Autocheck, and other reporting companies purchase vehicle information to notify potential buyers of prior accidents. Often times, these reports attach a stigma to your vehicle and buyers will want to pay less as a result. Fortunately, Florida law recognizes your claim for diminished value and The Injury Firm auto accident lawyers specialize in helping you recover the appropriate amount.

Car Loss of Use

Aside from the diminished value of your vehicle, Florida law allows you to recover for loss of use. Loss of use occurs when you are deprived of the use of your vehicle when it is damaged and/or getting repaired. Whether or not you rent a replacement vehicle, you are entitled to compensation for the deprivation of the use of your vehicle. Usually, the loss of use is measured by the daily rental rate of a "comparable" vehicle. Let The Injury Firm help you recover for your loss of use today.

For a free legal consultation, call 954-951-0000

Making a Car Diminished Value Loss of Use Claim

With this information in mind, you might be wondering how to get started. First and foremost, you should act quickly after a car accident that wasn't your fault because the statute of limitations is four years. If you don’t file a claim within four years of your accident date, you lose the right to do so moving forward.

First-Party Claims - In this first example, it would see a driver (and owner) of the damaged vehicle file the claim against their own insurance company. Essentially, the idea would be to recover the diminished value which, as we saw earlier, is the difference between the value before the accident and after the repairs have been completed. Unfortunately, first-party diminished value claims simply aren't recognized in Florida.

Third-Party Claims - Alternatively, the innocent driver can make the claim against the negligent driver and this is the more common option of the two. Even after settling with your own insurance company, you can recover the diminished value of your vehicle; here, the insurance company of the at-fault party will cover the cost.

Before doing anything else, you should get a vehicle appraisal done by a professional and this should show the value both before and after the accident. When making a claim, you’ll be requested to show proof that the vehicle has lost value as a direct result of the accident.

Furthermore, proof also needs to be available that the at-fault party was…well, at fault for the incident. For example, you’ll need to prove the following;

  • Breach of Duty - As we all know, motorists have a duty of care towards one another; by following the rules of the road, we all keep ourselves as well as all other road users and pedestrians safe. With your claim, there needs to be proof that the defendant breached this duty in some way. For example, they may have continued through a stop sign or turned without a signal. On the more severe side of things, they could have been driving recklessly or while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
  • Cause - Once this has been proved, you must show that your injuries are direct results of this breach; ultimately, you need to show that your injuries weren’t pre-existing and this ensures fairness in the claim.
  • Damage - By presenting the right documentation, the final proof shows that you suffered economic and non-economic damages as a result of the above.

If all of these factors are accepted, then it’s just a case of proving the difference in value before and after the incident. In addition to the appraisal we’ve already discussed, this includes all proof of repairs and any further evidence that’ll strengthen your claim.

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At The Injury Firm, our auto accident lawyers know exactly what will and won’t help your claim and this advice can be invaluable because it could just be the difference between winning the claim and failing.

Claim Value? - Often, one of the most common questions within this topic is ‘how much is my claim worth?’ and it’s a good question. However, there’s no definitive answer because it all depends on what type of vehicle you own, the value of the said vehicle, frame damage, vehicle damage prior to the accident, and the quality of all repairs.

Contact Us Today - At The Injury Firm, we have a team of dedicated and passionate employees who want nothing more than to see your claim be successful. With experience in all the right areas, our auto accident lawyers can help you to obtain the compensation you deserve. With a simple phone call, you can talk with an expert and we can get the ball rolling! Call now  984-951-0000.

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