Making a property damage claim can be an easy process or full of headache depending on the circumstances. However, they are rarely as simple and transparent as the insurance company would have you believe. In addition to a claim for vehicle property damage, the vehicle owner may also have claims involving split liability, diminished value, damaged or destroyed personal effects, a rental car and/or loss of use. Moreover, these claims could be made under liability coverage, collision coverage or uninsured motorist coverage as the dictated by the facts.
When navigating this maze of potential claims and trying to secure fair compensation, it is important to realize that many adjusters will not volunteer critical information that could significantly impact the value and/or scope of your claim.
Imagine, for instance, that the at-fault party’s insurance company unreasonably delays repair to your damaged vehicle while they are “investigating”. Also, you choose not to use your insurance, and therefore forgo a rental pending their decision.
In this scenario, when the liability carrier finally decides that their insured did in fact cause the wreck, you will likely receive a rental. However, the at fault party’s insurer is unlikely to tell you that you may also be entitled to a separate loss of use check for the time you were without a vehicle. Securing full compensation for all your property damage claims should be your goal. It is certainly ours.
Access to a repair rental is normally provided when the other party’s liability is established. That said, insurance companies will sometimes delay or deny rental coverage without a valid reason. If you are facing unjustifiable delay, we would love to help. Few things are more frustrating than a lack of transportation.
Disputing property damage valuations in court can cause a delay in the repair of your vehicle, but sometimes court is the best option. Under OCGA § 33-4-6 (first party) & OCGA § 33-4-7 (third party), insurance companies can be forced to pay penalties for acting in bad faith regarding property damage claims.
Driving without collision coverage is risky because you may get hit by an uninsured driver and have to pay for car repairs yourself. If you find that the at-fault party’s insurance carrier refuses to pay for the repairs, it is important to quickly consult with an attorney. An investigation of all your options is essential.