Our cars and trucks are our primary form of transportation. So, when we are involved in an accident and our cars are damaged, we need to get our vehicles repaired and back on the road as soon as possible. Sometimes the repair and possibly replacement process can seem frustratingly slow and costs can be extensive. If you’re in an accident that is not your fault, it’s important to know how to make sure the at-fault driver’s insurance company will cover the cost of your car repair after an accident. You may even need help getting your own insurance company to step up and take care of the expenses, coordinate a rental vehicle, and schedule repairs. In some situations, you may need to file a claim with your own insurance to expedite the process, pay your own deductible and get the repairs, estimates and replacement done promptly. Afterward, your insurance company will likely return your deductible within 6-12 months. In either situation, it’s important to hire an attorney to handle the personal injury and property damage aspects of your claim following an accident. Whalen Injury Lawyers' personal injury attorneys exclusively represent clients against large insurance companies and big corporations in personal injury matters. We can verify if the information your insurance company or the other driver’s insurance company is giving you is accurate and reliable.
Colorado is a “Fault Based” Car Accident State, meaning that in the event of a car accident, the driver at fault for the accident is financially responsible for the losses caused by the accident, including injuries, lost income, vehicle damage, etc. These losses are generally covered by the at-fault driver’s limited liability car insurance. For all drivers in the state of Colorado, they are required to obtain liability insurance coverage for their vehicle in the event of an accident. The liability insurance states the limits that the insurance company will pay which includes $25,000 bodily injury liability per person, $50,000 bodily injury liability per accident, and $15,000 property damage liability per accident, but the policyholder has the option to increase these limits. For the at-fault driver, this coverage will pay for the not-at-fault driver’s losses due to the accident up to their specified limit.
Liability insurance does not cover the expenses of the at-fault driver in the event of an accident, so often policyholders will also add Full Coverage insurance, which includes Collision and/or Comprehensive insurance. Collision insurance will cover the damage expenses of the policyholder’s car in the event of a car collision with another car, hitting an object that results in damage to the car, or driving off the road. Comprehensive insurance coverage will cover any damage expenses due to any event unrelated to driving the car including hail damage, fire or theft.
Any damage your vehicle sustains in an accident is considered property damage. The driver at fault in an accident is responsible for all car repairs after an accident caused by their negligence, but not just to the vehicle. If your car must be replaced, the other driver’s insurance company should cover the cost of replacing your vehicle. Here are the steps to take after an accident involving property damage.
- Call the police; property damage must be reasonably reported even if no one was injured
- Get medical attention; it’s imperative to be evaluated by a medical professional, whether you feel as if you are injured or not
- Call your insurance company to file a claim and have an insurance adjuster look at your vehicle and evaluate the cost of your car repair after an accident
- Get one or two estimates for the cost of repairs from reputable mechanics
- Compare your estimates with the one the insurance company gets, and find out what your insurance company will pay (don’t forget about your deductible)
- When you have your car fixed after an accident, which your insurance company should pay for, ask the mechanic to inform you if any additional damage is discovered, and ask him to call the insurance adjuster with this information – for instance, frame damage
- If your estimates and the insurance adjuster’s do not agree, both of you can hire an appraiser to evaluate the vehicle and attempt to reach an agreement based on the appraisers’ findings
- Your insurance company will pursue the at-fault driver’s insurance carrier for reimbursement for the cost of the repairs to your vehicle under subrogation which can lead to the return of your deductible
- It is possible that the at-fault driver’s insurance company will offer to get your car fixed after an accident but may limit the businesses and quality of repairs from different vendors they work with in auto damage claims
- You will need to hire, or at the very least consult, with a personal injury attorney to help you with the insurance company
If your car is a total loss, the insurance company will pay the actual cash value based on similar vehicles for sale in your area. This amount may not total the amount you owe on your auto loan, but if you purchased gap insurance, this policy will cover the amount left on the loan over and above the settlement amount. Our Denver personal injury attorneys can help you work through the process of filing a property damage claim as well as a claim for any medical bills and associated losses caused by injury you may sustain in the accident and ensure that your claim is filed in a timely manner.
If you were the one at fault for the accident, you may still be eligible for some property damage reimbursement from your insurance company, as that portion of your policy should pay for repair or replacement of your vehicle. Paying for another person’s property damage may be more complicated. Our firm has successfully represented many car accident victims over the years, winning millions in personal injury case settlements. Our personal injury Denver attorneys know how to take on the large insurance companies and make sure you receive the compensation you deserve. We’re proud to be one of America’s Top 100 Attorneys, 5280 Top Attorneys in Colorado, Top 100 Trial Lawyers, and Super Lawyers. We take on the fight for a fair settlement, so you can focus on getting the treatment you need to heal from your injuries and get the car repair after an accident you need to move on with your life.
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The team at Whalen Injury Lawyers will fight for you to get the compensation that you deserve. Our firm's goal is to establish a meaningful, direct and reliable relationship with you and secure a settlement that is reasonable and fair. Our personal injury lawyers will work closely with you to make sure that you are sufficiently compensated for any loss you suffer as a result of a personal injury. Contact us today for a free, no-obligation consultation to discuss your legal options.
You can reach our Denver attorneys at (720) 307-2666. Our offices are located in the Denver Tech Center at 7955 East Arapahoe Court, Suite 2375, Centennial, CO 80112. We look forward to working with you.