Like most drivers in Indiana, you follow the law and carry liability coverage on your vehicle. Maybe you carry the lowest amount possible to keep your insurance rate affordable, or perhaps you have invested in a large policy to protect your personal property and income from liability.
After a crash, you might find yourself left without a vehicle. If the insurance company declares your vehicle a total loss, meaning that it would be either unsafe or very expensive to repair your vehicle, you may need to file a claim to buy a replacement. Will insurance pay for the cost of buying a vehicle to replace the one irreparably damaged in the crash?
What insurance pays depends on two factors
The amount of coverage you will have to replace your vehicle depends on two specific details. The first relates to the amount of coverage that you and the other driver have on your vehicles. If the other driver only has $25,000 in property damage coverage, that may not be nearly enough to buy a new vehicle.
Thankfully, Indiana requires uninsured and underinsured motorist protection equivalent to the liability coverage you carry. Your policy could potentially help pay the difference between what the other driver’s insurance will cover and the cost of a replacement vehicle.
The second factor is the fair market value of the totaled vehicle. For those who drive particularly valuable vehicles, insurance might not fully cover the costs of replacing a vehicle totaled in a crash.
When insurance falls short, you can go to court
If the combination of the coverage the other driver carries and your own policy will not be enough to fully cover the cost of replacing your vehicle, then you can potentially file a civil lawsuit against the other driver.
Provided that you have proof of the costs you incurred and the value of the vehicle damaged in the wreck, you can ask the civil courts to award sufficient damages to replace your vehicle with a comparable one.
If you aren’t aware of your rights when dealing with an insurance company or handling the damage to your vehicle after a crash, you could end up stuck with bills that the other driver’s coverage should pay. Learning more about how Indiana manages car insurance will help you get the coverage you required after a motor vehicle collision.