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Diminished Value Claim Illinois

Michael Agruss

Written and Reviewed by Michael Agruss

  • Managing Partner and Personal Injury Lawyer at Mike Agruss Law.
  • Over 20 years of experience in Personal Injury.
  • Over 8000+ consumer rights cases settled.
  • Graduated from the University of Illinois Chicago School of Law: Juris Doctor, 2004.

When a vehicle is involved in an accident, its market value often decreases even after repairs have been made. In Illinois, individuals have the right to file a diminished value claim to recover the loss in their vehicle’s market value resulting from an accident. This legal recognition allows vehicle owners to seek compensation from the at-fault party’s insurance company or their own if the other driver was uninsured.

Understanding the specifics of an Illinois diminished value claim is vital for those who find themselves in such unfortunate circumstances. The state allows for claim submissions up to five years after the accident, providing consumers ample time to assess the diminished value and initiate the process. It’s also important to note that in order to be eligible for compensation, the vehicle owner must not be at fault for the incident.

Navigating diminished value claims effectively often requires expertise. Engaging professional services specializing in diminished value appraisals can lead to more accurate assessments of the loss and stronger support during the claim process. Aimed at highlighting the vehicle’s diminished value post-accident, these appraisals play a crucial role in determining the amount the owner is entitled to from the insurance company. If you need help with an Illinois diminished value situation, a car accident lawyer from Mike Agruss Law can help.

Decreasing Stack Of Coins

Understanding Diminished Value in Illinois

When a vehicle is involved in an accident, its resale value often decreases regardless of the quality of repairs made. This concept, known as diminished value, specifically addresses the reduction in market value for a vehicle post-accident.

Types of Diminished Value

Diminished value in Illinois generally falls into three categories. Immediate Diminished Value refers to the loss in value directly after an accident and before any repairs. Inherent Diminished Value is the most common, reflecting the loss of value after the vehicle has been adequately repaired, due to the history of an accident being associated with the car. Lastly, there is the potential for Repair-Related Diminished Value, which occurs when the quality of the repair is less than optimal, leaving the vehicle with remaining issues that further decrease its value.

Illinois Law and Diminished Value Claims

Illinois is considered a diminished value state, which allows vehicle owners to file a claim for the diminished value of their vehicle, based on the pre-accident value. The state law acknowledges that individuals are entitled to the diminished value if another party is at fault. Claims can be submitted up to five years post-accident, and it is crucial to have a professional appraisal to establish the vehicle’s pre-accident value and the diminished value after the incident effectively.

Filing a Diminished Value Claim

When a vehicle is involved in an auto accident, its market value can depreciate even after repairs. In Illinois, individuals have the right to seek compensation for this loss through a diminished value claim with an insurance company.

Determining Eligibility

To be eligible for a diminished value claim in Illinois, one must not be the at-fault party in the auto accident. The claimant’s vehicle should have a loss in market value due to the accident, known as the pre-accident value. Claims must be made against the at-fault party’s insurance company, or, in cases where the other driver is uninsured, against the claimant’s own insurance company.

Calculating the Diminished Value

Calculating a vehicle’s diminished value starts with determining its pre-accident value, then assessing the current value post-repair. Factors influencing this calculation include the extent of damage and the vehicle’s make, model, and mileage. The common formula used is:

Diminished Value = Pre-Accident Value – (Repaired Vehicle Value + Inherent Loss of Value)

For a precise estimate, professional appraisal services are recommended.

Navigating the Claims Process

The claims process requires the claimant to first notify the responsible party’s insurance company of the intent to file a diminished value claim. Documentation is important; this includes the accident report, repair documents, and the diminished value appraisal. Negotiating with the insurance company can be a complex process, and it may be beneficial to consult with a legal professional specializing in auto accident claims to ensure proper representation and fair settlement.

Dealing with Insurance Companies

When engaging with insurance firms for a diminished value claim in Illinois, it is critical to understand the intricacies involved in negotiating with insurers as well as recognizing the juncture at which legal assistance may be necessary. Particularly, you need to be aware of nuances concerning Uninsured Motorist Coverage and the processes of your own insurance company.

Negotiating with Insurers

Negotiations with an insurance company can be pivotal in ensuring rightful compensation for the diminished value of a vehicle. When initiating a claim, it’s crucial to:

  • Provide complete documentation of the vehicle’s condition pre and post-accident.
  • Get a professional appraisal to substantiate the claim for diminished value.
  • Understand the policy details, especially clauses related to diminished value.

Sometimes, if the at-fault driver is uninsured, a claimant may file a diminished value claim under their own Uninsured Motorist Coverage. Presenting a strong case with clear evidence is essential in these negotiations.

When to Seek Legal Assistance

Legal assistance can be crucial when disputes arise regarding the claim’s validity or settlement amount. An attorney from Mike Agruss Law can also help when the claimant is unfamiliar with the legal intricacies of insurance policies.

If an offer from the insurance company seems unfairly low or the process becomes exceedingly complex, you may benefit from seeking assistance from a legal professional who is well-versed with Illinois insurance claims. Our legal experts can ensure that all relevant details are considered and claimants receive the compensation they are entitled to.

Contact Mike Agruss Law About Your Value Claim

The aftermath of a car accident can be overwhelmingly challenging, leaving you to navigate physical injuries, emotional trauma, and financial burdens. It is often made even worse when you realize your car isn’t worth as much as it used to be, even after repairs. During these trying times, our experienced car accident lawyers are dedicated to helping you rebuild your financial situation.

Contact us for a free initial consultation to learn more about what we can do for you.

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