I can have the car fix for less than insurance adjuster says. can I take the money

Asked over 1 year ago - Harvard, IL

Th insurance company of the man who hit my parked car wants to total the car. Can I take the money and get it fixed somewhere cheaper?

Attorney answers (8)

  1. Burton A. Padove

    Pro

    Contributor Level 16

    9

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . The usual practice is for you or someone in your position to accept the total and then buy back the vehicle from the insurance company for salvage value. You can then have the vehicle repaired.

    Mr. Padove is licensed to practice law in Illinois and Indiana. He can be contacted at Burtonap@aol.com (219) 836... more
  2. Joseph Paul Giamanco

    Pro

    Contributor Level 11

    7

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Probably. Most insurance companies will tell you what they will give you for the value of your car, subtract any "salvage" value for your car from that amount and will give you a check and allow you to retain the salvaged vehicle. They generally don't car what you do with the car as long as your claim is resolved and they are off the hook for any further payment on your property damage claim. If you have an injury claim as well I would be careful what you sign since you don't want to waive your rights to it as well.

  3. Christian K. Lassen II

    Pro

    Contributor Level 20

    6

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . A person would typically sign over the title to the insurance company, and then work out a number to repurchase it.

  4. Stephen Laurence Hoffman

    Pro

    Contributor Level 20

    4

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . As the others have said, generally, yes, you can do that.

    I have seen some odd situations where there had to be submitted some proof of the vehicle's roadworthiness before they'd cut the check. Depends on the policy language.

    Stephen L. Hoffman
    Law Office of Stephen L. Hoffman LLC
    Chicago, IL
    773-944-9737
    Email: stephen@hofflawyer.com
    Website: www.hofflawyer.com
    Blog: www.hofflawyer.com/blog/

    This answer posted on Avvo is for informational and educational purposes only. There is no attorney-client... more
  5. Charles Joseph Michael Candiano

    Pro

    Contributor Level 20

    4

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . No. Mr. Padove is correct. If the insurance company "totals" the car, they will NOT give you that money unless you surrender the title. You then must buy the car back for the salvage value. All of this is taken into consideration when they decide to "total" the car.

    If this information has been helpful, please indicate by clicking the up icon. Legal Disclaimer: Mr.... more
  6. S. David Rosenthal Esquire

    Contributor Level 18

    5

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Yes, you can receive a total loss settlement and keep the car on what's called an "owner retain." The insurance company will deduct salvage value from what they pay you, i.e., the amount that they could get from a junk yard for the car. You may have to register the car with a salvage title depending on Illinois law.

    Good luck.

  7. Sean Michael Patrick

    Contributor Level 16

    4

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Yes. Generally you are able to do that. However, you might find that the insurance company pays you less than full value in this instance. Best of luck.

    I am licensed in California, therefore, my answers are based on general prinicpals of law or California law, which... more
  8. Stephen Patrick Rapp

    Pro

    Contributor Level 11

    2

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Consult with an attorney if you have been injured as many lawyers will handle the property damage claim at no cost as part of representing you in your personal injury matter. Insurance companies have been known to get information and might say we can't pay unless you give a statement. Property damage claims can present other issues such as loss of use compensation, substitute vehicle and other issues. Far too often people try to handle their own claims. Consult with an attorney in your area.

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