Total Loss: How Do I Dispute My Insurance Settlement?

A Quick and Easy Guide to Understanding Your Rights

The most common call we get: Your car has been totaled, and you feel your insurance company has given you an unfair settlement offer. It can be extremely frustrating to navigate the system, know who to talk to, and determine what your actual options are for recourse! Your insurance policy does not allow for a legal dispute. Thankfully, there is a clear and relatively simple path explained right in your policy language.

The Appraisal Clause, or “Right to Appraisal” is in nearly every insurance policy nationwide. It states that if you and the insurance company do not agree on the value of your vehicle prior to loss, you and they will each hire a competent appraiser to establish the pre-loss value of the vehicle. Then, the two appraisers will attempt to negotiate a final agreement as to the value. If they cannot agree, they will send your case to a disinterested third party Umpire (the cost of which will be split between you and the insurance company), who will essentially act as the “judge” to finally settle the case once and for all.

That’s it!  The process itself is simple and straightforward, and we perform 200+ Total Loss appraisals each year.  This is done through market research, acquiring necessary documentation (window stickers, build sheets, restoration records, etc.), and reviewing your insurance policy for aftermarket coverage limits. Once the appraisal is complete and we have then been hired to represent you through the Appraisal Clause, we will work with the opposing appraiser to come to a final settlement, or represent your side of the dispute to the selected Umpire.

We urge you to NOT invoke your Appraisal Clause until AFTER you have hired us to appraise your vehicle as a “second opinion”. If we feel you have a good case to net a profit against the insurance company, we will advise you to move forward with the process! Call today to schedule your Total Loss Inspection and Appraisal: (810) 694-2008

 

Back to top