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  • Hypothetical car accident

    I'm totally jinxing myself for even writing this but my curiosity needs to be sated.

    In this truly hypothetical situation, let's say I'm driving my sub 5000 mile Toyota SUV to work. I only mention that it's a Toyota because of the acclaimed resale value. On this commute, the car to my right enters my lane, I try to swerve, can't swerve enough, and we have a fender bender.

    We pull over, there are no injuries, we exchange insurance. Let's say we get the police involved and the police report determines the other driver was probably negligent. The other driver admits no fault.

    I guess now the insurance companies do some back room deal and the other driver's insurance will pay to get my car looking good as new.

    But wait, won't that accident be reported and affect my resale value? Am I able to recoup that potential lost value in any way? Is this where small claims court comes into play?

    Paul

  • #2
    My truck has been rear ended twice in the past year and when I went to sell it neither of the repairs had been reported because they were "cosmetic". One a bent bumper and tailgate, the other a bent bumper and the truck bed. Both about $4500 in damage and different insurance companies.

    I don't know if there is a dollar threshold or some other factor that determines whether or not the damage gets reported, or whether there are just lazy insurance companies.

    In my worldview where everything is black and white, in addition to repairing the vehicle there should be some compensation for loss of value. Sadly reality doesn't always agree with my worldview.
    Chr's
    __________
    An ethical man knows the right thing to do.
    A moral man does it.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by atgcpaul View Post
      I'm totally jinxing myself for even writing this but my curiosity needs to be sated.

      In this truly hypothetical situation, let's say I'm driving my sub 5000 mile Toyota SUV to work. I only mention that it's a Toyota because of the acclaimed resale value. On this commute, the car to my right enters my lane, I try to swerve, can't swerve enough, and we have a fender bender.

      We pull over, there are no injuries, we exchange insurance. Let's say we get the police involved and the police report determines the other driver was probably negligent. The other driver admits no fault.

      I guess now the insurance companies do some back room deal and the other driver's insurance will pay to get my car looking good as new.

      But wait, won't that accident be reported and affect my resale value? Am I able to recoup that potential lost value in any way? Is this where small claims court comes into play?

      Paul
      The police report does not determine negligence or fault, that would be a matter for a court to decide.

      The likely outcome is that the insurance companies decide how much each party is at fault and split the cost of the repairs.

      Some would argue that the accident may affect resale value, but insurance won't compensate for that. The insurance pays to return the car to it's pre-loss condition, so there is no "loss of value" to compensate. Even if there were, it would be difficult to quantify and therefore to settle.
      --------------------------------------------------
      Electrical Engineer by day, Woodworker by night

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      • #4
        Accidents do affect resale value. Insurance companies.... some, most or a few, don’t know which ones, but mine does, compensate the owner of the repaired vehicle for the loss of value. It’s called Diminished Value.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by woodturner View Post

          The police report does not determine negligence or fault, that would be a matter for a court to decide.

          .
          Actually depends on the details of the accident and jurisdiction of occurrence. However generally speaking with fender benders LEO doesn't assign fault. Both drivers get the accident on their license because it is thought generally that all accidents are avoidable.

          just another brick in the wall...

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          • #6
            Accidents don't always affect resale value. When I was hit on my motorcycle I was automatically offered some amount for diminished value and some amount for general "troubles" caused, I think $500 each. The bike damage was $4k which they also paid. In the end, it had zero effect on the value of the bike, nobody cared.

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            • #7
              What’s going to happen when you trade your once wrecked vehicle in and the dealership shows you the car fax showing the repaired damage? Full trade in value? I think not!

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              • #8
                Originally posted by capncarl View Post
                What’s going to happen when you trade your once wrecked vehicle in and the dealership shows you the car fax showing the repaired damage? Full trade in value? I think not!
                In my case, yes, I got full trade on a truck that had been subjected to minor damage. The sort of thing the original post talked about.

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