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How do Insurance Co deductions for unrepaired damages and/or rust in auto collision work?

Chicago, IL |

In Illinois, the insurance company may deduct an unlimited amount from the value if your vehicle has old, unrepaired collision damages. What does this mean and how does it work?

My vehicle is pretty beat up (I.e., scratches and rust), but the other driver clearly caused a large dent in the side panel where no other damage was there. I have photos of before and after for proof. Can the insurance company deduct from the repair costs of my other damage?

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Attorney answers 3


The repairs the other side is liable for are the fair cost of repairs less any prior damage or depreciation. If the car is totaled out, the value they are liable for is the fair market value of the car, including deductions for damage, depreciation, mileage, and adding any salvage value.

If you did not have your own insurance, you are stuck with their evaluation. If you were insured, you're likely better off filing a claim with your own carrier.

This answer posted on Avvo is for informational and educational purposes only. There is no attorney-client relationship created or formed and you should not rely on this as legal advice. The suggestion is made that if you wish to protect your rights, you consult with an attorney immediately.


Attorney Hoffman laid it out well


Mr. Hoffman gave you sound advice. The insurers have varying ways to measure the damage, but whether they look at the cost to restore the care to its "beat up" condition or look at the cost to restore it to as-new and then deduct t the cost to repair the prior damage, the numbers should be about the same.

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