No, you cannot insure a car with a salvage title in Montana. Salvage vehicles are cars that have been declared a total loss, meaning they’re too damaged to be worth repairing and cannot be driven legally. As a result, no legitimate car insurance company writes policies for them.
Although insurance companies in Montana won’t insure a car with a current salvage title, you can get coverage if you have the vehicle repaired and inspected by a state-certified mechanic. If it’s declared safe to drive, the DMV will issue the car a rebuilt salvage title. Several insurance companies, including Allstate and Geico, sell policies to vehicles with a rebuilt salvage title.
Keep in mind that some insurers will only sell liability insurance for rebuilt salvage cars, meaning that they won’t pay for any physical damage to the vehicle. Even if you are able to get collision and comprehensive insurance, your policy may not cover the full value of the car if it’s totaled again.
If your car is totaled and you’re not at fault, you should file a claim with the at-fault driver’s insurance company and report the accident to your own insurer as well. The other driver’s property damage liability coverage will reimburse you for your car’s actual cash value up to their policy limits. … read full answerActual cash value, or ACV, is the amount the car was worth immediately before the accident.
Claim Options if Your Car Is Totaled but You're Not At-Fault
In the event that the other driver does not have insurance, you can file a claim with your uninsured motorist or collision coverage, if you have it. You can also file a collision claim if the other driver refuses to admit fault. In this case, the insurance companies will eventually determine who is responsible. Then, your insurer will recoup the cost of your collision claim and deductible in a process called subrogation.
How Insurance Companies Determine if Your Car Is Totaled
Insurance companies decide if a car is totaled by comparing the cost of repairs to the car’s value. Exact formulas vary by state and insurance company. However, it’s worth noting that repairs are often more extensive than they appear, and even a small accident can sometimes total a vehicle.
You can get car insurance without a license from some small local insurers. To get car insurance without a license you need to exclude yourself as a driver on the policy and list a licensed family member, friend, or caretaker as the primary driver. It’s possible, with some effort, to insure your car so someone else can drive it.… read full answer
How to Get Car Insurance Without a License
1. Contact regional insurance companies or a local independent agent.
Focusing on smaller companies will give you the best chance of finding coverage as an unlicensed driver. Most national companies will not insure you without a license. The risk is too high, in their eyes, that you will drive the car yourself.
2. List yourself as an excluded driver on the policy.
This is a legal statement that, as an unlicensed driver, you are not going to drive the car. Note that if you do drive illegally and get into an accident, the insurance company will not cover any claims. If you get or regain your license while the car is insured, you must notify your insurance company and provide your new license number before you are legally insured on the policy.
3. List the person who will operate the vehicle the most as the primary driver on the policy.
This can be a spouse, family member, roommate, caretaker or friend. They may live with you or not. They must, of course, have a valid driver’s license.
4. List the primary driver on your registration as part-owner.
Try this step if you can’t find any company that will insure the car for you without a license. There should be no trouble insuring the car with a licensed driver listed as co-owner.
Why You Might Need Car Insurance Without a License
Your license is suspended and you need to file an SR-22 or FR-44 to reinstate it
You only have a learner’s permit
You are insuring a collectible vehicle that you won’t drive
You own a car that is driven by a caregiver or chauffeur
You need to co-sign a policy for an underage driver
If no one is going to drive the car, but you want to protect it against accidental damage while it’s stored, you have the option of purchasing comprehensive-only or parked-car coverage. You will have to cancel your registration and turn in your plates to do this, but it is cheaper than buying a policy that also offers liability coverage. This type of insurance is offered by many national firms such as Allstate and State Farm.
Yes, an insurance company can force you to total your car because state laws regulate when cars need to be totaled. Your only option is to negotiate with your insurer about the car’s value, as convincing the insurer to adjust the value might affect whether the car has to be totaled according to state law.… read full answer
When an Insurance Company Can Total Your Car
Cars are totaled when the cost of repairs exceeds either the vehicle's pre-crash value or a specific total loss threshold established by the state. For instance, in New York, a car is considered totaled if the cost of repairs is more than 75% of the vehicle’s actual cash value (ACV). Total loss threshold laws account for the fact that damage is often more extensive than it first appears.
It’s also important to note that the ACV is not the price you paid for the car. Instead, the ACV is an approximation of the car’s worth just before it was damaged, so it factors in things like depreciation and mileage.
What You Can Do If Your Insurance Company Wants to Total Your Car
Even if you don’t want your insurer to total your car, you can’t argue with your state’s total loss threshold or ask the insurer to use a different system. However, you can argue that your car was worth more than the ACV chosen by the insurer.
Just bear in mind that you cannot simply choose an estimate based on your own opinion. Instead, you need to provide justification for your estimate of the car’s value, such as an independent appraisal, photographs of upgrades or modifications you made to the car, and/or the prices of comparable vehicles for sale in the area.
If the insurer does not agree with your statements regarding the car’s ACV, you can reach out to your state’s insurance regulator for help. You can also seek arbitration or litigation, though legal fees are likely to decrease or even negate any monetary gains that you make.
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