I was in a wreck that totaled my car. My insurance won't pay loan value.

Apolinsky & Associates, LLC law firm has been recognized as a preeminent personal injury law firm that successfully handles catastrophic injury and wrongful death cases that impact individuals and their families' quality of life, income and long term health. Founder Stephen D. Apolinsky, a member of the Georgia, Alabama and D.C. Bars, has been profiled in Newsweek Magazine, recognized as a Superlawyer and as a Top 100 Trial Lawyer. He is also the creator of the free app My Injury Lawyer.

I was recently in a collision and my car was totaled. I owe the finance company $10,000.00 for the car, but the insurance company tells me that it is only worth $7,000.00 and that is all they will pay. Can I make them pay off my car?

I hear this question all the time and the answer is generally not what the client wants to hear. The minute you purchase a vehicle and drive it off the lot it diminishes in value. For instance, if you purchase a vehicle and drove it home and immediately decided to resell it, the resale value would likely be thousands of dollars less than you paid for the vehicle because the vehicle is now used. Insurance companies are only bound to pay the fair market value of the vehicle. Accordingly, the amount they pay is a set figure amount that the car is currently worth. It is normally much lower than what you paid and may times it is much lower than what you still owe. The way you can protect yourself from this unfortunate outcome is to purchase gap insurance. This is a policy with your insurance company that covers the difference between what you owe on the vehicle and the fair market value. Keep this is mind when you are purchasing vehicle insurance.

The foregoing answer is not legal advice and is merely a general overview. You are advised to consult a lawyer to address your specific situation.