A totaled car might be possible to fix, depending on the extent of the damage. A car is totaled when the cost of repairs exceeds a certain percentage of the vehicle’s value, according to state laws, but in some situations the car may still be repairable. However, fixing a totaled car is often expensive and may not be realistic. For instance, fixing the vehicle is probably not an option if it’s leased or financed, since the dealership or financial institution will have the final say about what happens to the car in that case.
How to Fix a Totaled Car
1. Contact the insurance company.
If they allow you to keep the vehicle, the insurer that decided the car is totaled will subtract the salvage value from your final settlement amount. The salvage value is the car’s worth in its destroyed state. The car will be given a salvage title at this point, meaning that it cannot be legally driven until it’s been repaired, inspected, and retitled.
2. Have a qualified mechanic determine whether the car can be fixed safely.
Remember that the cost of repairs can quickly add up, since many problems can only be uncovered once the mechanic starts working.
3. Get a new insurance policy and a rebuilt title before driving the car, if you choose to have it repaired.
Not every insurer will cover cars with a rebuilt title, so you might need to shop around and contact multiple companies.
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