Can I Still Recover Diminished Value if the Accident Was My Fault?

August 4, 2022

If the accident was your fault, in most instances, you won’t be able to recover your vehicle’s diminished value. That’s because you will be making a first party claim against your own insurance policy. In a first party claim, you have a contractual relationship with your insurance company and your bound by the terms of your policy. Most insurance policies specifically exclude coverage for diminished value.

However, there are some states such as Georgia, where you can file a diminished value claim under your own insurance policy.

Georgia state law requires insurance companies to assess diminished value on all claims, regardless of who was at-fault. That means if you were at-fault, you can recoup your diminished value under your collision coverage. In addition, you can also recover diminished value on single vehicle accidents like deer hits, hitting a fixed object, or even vandalism.

What happens if the accident was someone else’s fault?

If someone else was at-fault for your accident, you can file a diminished value claim against that person’s insurance company under their property damage liability coverage. This is called a third party claim, a claim against a third-party for negligently causing damage to your automobile.

Third-party claims are governed by tort law and you aren’t bound by the terms of your insurance policy or theirs. Under a third-party claim, you are entitled to be made whole. In most states, the measure of damages under tort law (Restatement of Torts 928) is the reasonable cost of repairs with due allowance for any difference between the original value and the value after repairs.

So what does all this mean to you?

If you weren’t at-fault, you can present a claim for diminished value, but it has to be filed against the at-fault person’s insurance. Then all you need to do is prove your claim. That’s where DVCHECK comes in. We provide you with an appraisal that documents your diminished value loss and we are by your side throughout the claim helping you negotiate a fair settlement.

To learn more about the diminished value recovery process please visit our website at dvcheck.com.