How Much Will Insurance Pay for My Totaled Car?


The feeling of helplessness from the unknown is never fun. You worry about things beyond your control, lose sleep and add to your gray hair. That’s precisely what happens when you total a car and an insurance company is involved.

Rather than losing sleep about how much your insurance will pay for a totaled car, you can find out how much you can get for your wrecked vehicle. And in all likelihood, you can get a payout AND sell your car.

Did You Know?

When your car is totaled you can maximize the amount of money you get by getting your insurance payout, and then selling your wrecked car.

We can give you a market-value offer for your vehicle, and it’s often the best offer out there! Find out how much you can get with a guaranteed quote!

Insurance Payout for a Totaled Car

Your car has quite likely met its demise. It may have been in an accident, taken an unexpected dip in a pool or floodwaters, or gotten a little extra toasty because of a wiring malfunction. You can tell at a glance that repairs aren’t going to be cheap, or they may not be possible at all. You have to figure out what to do with your totaled car.

Your adjuster is helpful to a degree but you don’t get any answers until they’ve decided what to do with your smashed-up car. And once they determine it’s a total loss vehicle, you’ll have to come to an agreement on its value. But just how much will that be?

When Is a Car Totaled by Insurance?

When Is a Car Considered Totaled?According to Geico, a leading insurance provider in the US, there are three factors in determining a total loss car:

  • when damage is so severe that the car can’t be repaired safely.

  • when the cost of the repairs is more than the vehicle is worth.

  • when vehicle damage is so severe that state regulations dictate that it must be considered a total loss car.

All insurance providers have specific criteria and formulas to determine when to consider a car totaled. It may vary a little from one company to the next but minimally.

As well, you MUST have insurance for total loss. If your insurance coverage has lapsed or you’ve chosen a policy that limits your claim amount, you may be stuck with a vehicle that won’t be repaired or declared a total loss. Or if it is, can you even keep your car if it's totaled?

If Airbags Deploy, Is My Car Totaled?

It doesn’t take a major accident for airbags to deploy, although it’s almost a guarantee that they will deploy in a major smashup. Now you might have heard the question 'is your car totaled if the air bags deployed'? Just because your airbags have blown doesn’t automatically make your vehicle a total loss. It’s just one factor, but an expensive one that can jack up the claim total for any collision.

If your airbags deploy, it will definitely get a closer look from your adjuster. Between airbag replacement cost, collision repairs, and other factors like rental car costs, it could mean your claim is marginal or a total loss. However, if you drive a newer vehicle or an expensive car, the repair cost is less likely to be near your car’s value. Is it worth it to fix or should you sell your car as is?

How can I get a quote for my totaled car instantly?

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How Much Insurance Pays for a Totaled Car

There’s no clear-cut formula you can use to determine your totaled car value. Because every vehicle’s condition is different, you won’t get a concrete number until you’ve hashed it out with your adjuster. And even then, it’s often up for discussion at least a little. You can, however, get insight into how that number is achieved.

  • Actual Cash Value is determined. That’s the resale price for your vehicle if it hadn’t been totaled. The insurance company will look at recent listings and sales for similar vehicles in your area.

  • Pre-accident condition is considered. Your car’s mileage, options and trim level, and any pre-accident damage is weighed into the equation.

  • Your deductible is… well, deducted. The insurance deductible you chose for your insurance policy is held back from the payout amount for your claim.

Totaled Car Value

If your car is totaled how much does insurance pay? They pay the difference between your vehicle’s pre-accident appraised value and your deductible.Your insurance covers the difference, so you can hopefully get a good value from their insurance payout for your totaled car. Even after the insurance claim, the totaled car may still have value. However, depending on what additional insurance benefits you opted in for such a collision coverage or GAP insurance, there may be more to it.

How Does GAP Insurance for Cars Work?

So, your car is a total loss, but you had the foresight to buy GAP insurance. GAP insurance takes care of the disparity between what your car is worth and the balance of your loan or what you owe on your lease or finance agreement from your financing company. Sadly, you won’t see any of this money, because its purpose is to pay back your lienholder so you aren’t left holding the car loan bag and all the negative equity. It’ll go directly to the lender you chose for your vehicle.

You only need GAP insurance if you owe more than your vehicle is worth. Once your loan amount is less than your car’s value, GAP insurance is of no help anymore.

After Your Total Loss on a Car is Settled

If your car has been totaled, we can help you get the most from it. In many cases, you can settle your total loss claim, then buy back your totaled car at salvage value. This way you can profit from selling a totaled car, and get your insurance payout at the same time.

Selling a Totaled Car

 CarBrain will make you a guaranteed offer for your total loss car in less than 90 seconds, and we fairly evaluate every car we make an offer on. When you accept our offer, we’ll come pick up your vehicle and put cash in your hand on the spot. Usually our free towing services take 24-48 hours, and will deliver payment at the same time. CarBrain is an easy way to sell your totaled car fast.

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