How do you get insurance to pay for a totaled car?

You can get insurance to pay for your totaled car if the estimated repairs are too costly to retain the value of the vehicle. You'll receive a settlement payment a few days after the payout value is determined, but that payment will go to your lender to cover the cost of the car if you're financing.

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Chris Tepedino is a feature writer that has written extensively about auto insurance for numerous websites. He has a college degree in communication from the University of Tennessee and has experience reporting, researching investigative pieces, and crafting detailed, data-driven features. His works have been featured on CB Blog Nation, Flow Words, Healing Law, WIBW Kansas, and Cinncinati.com. ...

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Rachael Brennan has been working in the insurance industry since 2006 when she began working as a licensed insurance representative for 21st Century Insurance, during which time she earned her Property and Casualty license in all 50 states. After several years she expanded her insurance expertise, earning her license in Health and AD&D insurance as well. She has worked for small health in...

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Reviewed by Rachael Brennan
Licensed Insurance Agent

UPDATED: Oct 27, 2020

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Can't-Miss Facts

  • Insurance companies determine the cost of repairs to your car after an accident and decide whether it's cost-effective to repair it or total it out.
  • You probably don't have to continue paying for your auto insurance policy if your car is totaled, but check with your insurer.
  • After a vehicle is totaled, it might be sold at auction and can be bought, repaired, and re-titled as a salvaged car. Salvaged vehicles can usually only get liability coverage.

How do you get insurance to pay for a totaled car?

If you get into a car accident, make sure to immediately call and let your insurer know. They will start the process of determining if they will pay to repair your vehicle or total it out.

If your car is determined a total loss, car insurance will dispense the settlement payment to you or your lender for the actual value of the vehicle. Normally, you can stop paying your auto insurance at this point but always check with your insurer.

Do you need auto insurance that will cover your vehicle if it gets totaled? Don't sleep on that. Enter your ZIP code above to get FREE quotes from multiple insurers.

You Can Get Insurance to Pay for Your Totaled Car

How does insurance pay for a totaled car? How much do insurance companies pay for a totaled car? How do you get a total loss car insurance settlement after a wreck? All great questions. Let's dive in.

Your insurer will send out someone to assess the damage. The car will be totaled out if the damage is determined to be a certain percentage of the car's value — the exact percentage varies by state but could be 75 percent for example.

You can check to find out if your car is totaled with a calculator online, but most of the time the insurance company's decision is final.

This video from eHow Finance goes over some of what you should expect while dealing with insurance over a totaled car.

You can take that total loss car insurance settlement and get a new car after a total loss with your payment.

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Are you wondering how to get insurance to pay more for a totaled car? Or perhaps you're not at that stage yet and you're asking, "How do insurance companies determine how much to pay for a totaled car?" or, "What will insurance pay for a totaled car?"

If you feel like insurance is not paying enough for a totaled car, you might have some options. Need to know how to fight an insurance company about a totaled car? The Law Offices of Nelson, Macneil, and Rayfield says that you could:

  • Research what you believe is the fair market value of your vehicle and see if it's higher than the insurer believes. One option for this is Kelley Blue Book. You can also check local used car lots that are selling similar vehicles. Then give your counter-offer.
  • If your car was totaled and you're not at fault for the accident, you may be able to compare offers from your insurer and the at-fault party's insurer.

How do you negotiate with insurance for a total loss? You may not have a lot of options, but you can try the same tactics with researching the value of your vehicle.

How long does insurance take to pay for a totaled car?

After the payout value has been determined, it should only take a few days for you to get your settlement. If you're leasing, the money may go directly to your lender.

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Do you still have to pay insurance if your car is totaled?

As long as your policy was paid up-to-date at the time of the accident, you can probably stop making insurance payments. If you paid ahead of time, you'll receive a refund for the unused portion of your policy.

If you're financing the vehicle, make sure you continue the car payments until the process is finished.

How do you buy a total loss car?

How much is it to buy back a totaled car from insurance? After a vehicle has been totaled and the claim has been paid out, insurers will often take the vehicle to auction to get what they can from it.

The insurer will deduct about 20-40 percent off the value of the vehicle. If you're interested in one of these vehicles, you can buy it and title it as a salvaged vehicle after fixing it.

Can you insure a car that has been totaled?

Most insurers will provide liability-only coverage for a salvage car, but repairs that might affect the integrity of your vehicle make insurers hesitant to provide full coverage, which includes comprehensive and collision.

Minimum Liability Auto Insurance Requirements by State
StatesInsurance RequiredMinimum Liability Requirements
AlabamaBI & PD Liab25/50/25
AlaskaBI & PD Liab50/100/25
ArizonaBI & PD Liab15/30/10
ArkansasBI & PD Liab, PIP25/50/25
CaliforniaBI & PD Liab15/30/5
ColoradoBI & PD Liab25/50/15
ConnecticutBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/20
DelawareBI & PD Liab, PIP25/50/10
FloridaPD Liab, PIP10/20/10
GeorgiaBI & PD Liab25/50/25
HawaiiBI & PD Liab, PIP20/40/10
IdahoeBI & PD Liab25/50/15
IllinoisBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/20
IndianaBI & PD Liab25/50/25
IowaBI & PD Liab20/40/15
KansasBI & PD Liab, PIP25/50/25
KentuckyBI & PD Liab, PIP, UM, UIM25/50/25
LouisianaBI & PD Liab15/30/25
MaineBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM, Medpay50/100/25
MarylandBI & PD Liab, PIP, UM, UIM30/60/15
MassassachusettsBI & PD Liab, PIP20/40/5
MichiganBI & PD Liab, PIP20/40/10
MinnesotaBI & PD Liab, PIP, UM, UIM30/60/10
MississippiBI & PD Liab25/50/25
MissouriBI & PD Liab, UM25/50/25
MontanaBI & PD Liab25/50/20
NebraskaBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/25
NevadaBI & PD Liab25/50/20
New HampshireFR only25/50/25
New JerseyBI & PD Liab, PIP, UM, UIM15/30/5
New MexicoBI & PD Liab25/50/10
New YorkBI & PD Liab, PIP, UM, UIM25/50/10
North CarolinaBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM30/60/25
North DakotaBI & PD Liab, PIP, UM, UIM25/50/25
OhioBI & PD Liab25/50/25
OklahomaBI & PD Liab25/50/25
OregonBI & PD Liab, PIP, UM, UIM25/50/20
PennsylvaniaBI & PD Liab, PIP15/30/5
Rhode IslandBI & PD Liab25/50/25
South CarolinaBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/25
South DakotaBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/25
TennesseeBI & PD Liab25/50/15
TexasBI & PD Liab, PIP30/60/25
UtahBI & PD Liab, PIP25/65/15
VermontBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/10
VirginiaBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/20
WashingtonBI & PD Liab25/50/10
Wasington D.C.BI & PD Liab, UM25/50/10
West VirginiaBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/25
WisconsinBI & PD Liab, UM, Medpay25/50/10
WyomingBI & PD Liab25/50/20

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Rebuilt salvage title car insurance that's more than just liability is difficult to find.

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