No, you cannot insure a car with a salvage title in West Virginia. 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 West Virginia 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 reconstructed title. Several insurance companies, including Allstate and Geico, sell policies to vehicles with a reconstructed title.
Keep in mind that some insurers will only sell liability insurance for reconstructed 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.
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.
Total loss car insurance settlements are determined by the policyholder’s deductible and the car’s actual cash value (ACV), which is what the vehicle was worth immediately before it was damaged. Insurers calculate ACV based on several factors, including a vehicle’s make and model, year, and mileage.
In several states, like California and Florida, a totaled car settlement will also factor in the sales tax on the driver’s new vehicle if they choose to purchase a replacement. Additionally, if the policyholder is filing a … read full answercomprehensive or collision insurance claim, then their deductible will be subtracted from the ACV for the final settlement.
Factors That Affect a Totaled Car Settlement
Vehicle make, model, year and mileage
Previous damage, mechanical problems, or cosmetic issues with the car
Local demand for similar vehicles
Sale price of comparable vehicles in the area
Policyholder’s comprehensive or collision deductible
The sales tax on the driver’s new car (not in all states)
How to Negotiate a Total Loss Car Insurance Settlement
It is possible to negotiate your totaled car insurance settlement if you think that your insurer’s offer is too low. If this is the case, you should send a counteroffer that includes your justification for why your car was worth more prior to being totaled. This can include an independent appraisal, receipts for any features you added, and prices for comparable vehicles.
Once you come to an agreement with the insurance company about your totaled car’s value, the rest of the process is relatively straightforward. If your car is leased or financed, the insurer will first pay your lender or lessor directly. But if you own your vehicle outright, you should receive a check fairly quickly.
How to Get a Totaled Car Settlement
File a liability, comprehensive, or collision insurance claim.
Gather documentation related to your vehicle, including your car’s title and sales receipt.
Research your car’s value using websites like Kelley Blue Book to make sure you’re getting a fair offer.
Accept the final settlement offer if you agree with it.
Wait a few days for your check to arrive, if you own your vehicle outright. If your vehicle is leased or financed, your insurer will pay your lender or lessor first.
You can get insurance on a car with a salvage title after the car is repaired, inspected and issued a rebuilt title. At that point, you will be able to get liability insurance with the rebuilt salvage car, though some insurance companies will be hesitant to provide full coverage for the vehicle. Even after repairs, insurance companies are still hesitant to cover a car for its full market value if it was given a salvage title. Some companies refuse to insure such vehicles at all.… read full answer
How to get insurance on a car after a salvage title
Get the car repaired and inspected.
Surrender your salvage title to the DMV and have it replaced with a rebuilt title.
Get the original repair estimate from when your car was totaled.
Get a certified mechanic’s statement verifying its safety, and photos from before and after repairs in order to get insurance quotes.
Shop around for coverage and get quotes from multiple insurers before purchasing a policy. Major insurance companies that cover repaired vehicles include Progressive and The Hartford.
Insurance companies that will insure cars after a salvage title
Finally, it's important to note that the amount of insurance you can get for a salvaged car varies from company to company. Often, insurance companies are willing to provide liability coverage - insurance that covers any damage that you cause with your car. Some companies also offer collision coverage for salvaged cars, though they might not cover the full value of the vehicle.
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