What Happens to a Vehicle After a Phoenix, AZ Car Accident?

Unexpected medical bills and severe physical pain can be disruptive consequences of a traffic accident all on their own but losing your main mode of transportation for weeks or months at a time can be even more inconvenient. To make matters worse, your insurance company may not always be forthcoming about exactly what rights you have when it comes to getting your car fixed after a crash that was not your fault — in fact, they may even intentionally mislead you in an attempt to protect their own bottom line.

Among many other things, a knowledgeable car accident lawyer can make sure your insurance company plays fair with you every step of the way toward getting you back on the road. In the meantime, here is a brief overview of what happens to a vehicle after a Phoenix, AZ car accident and what options you have for getting repairs or possibly a replacement for that vehicle.

Choosing Where to Get a Damaged Vehicle Repaired

As part of the process of deciding whether to cover a car accident claim, an insurance company may tell a crash victim who holds a policy with them to go to a specific service center, so their adjuster can inspect the damage done to the car, and potentially then to go to a specific repair shop to get the damage taken care of. Unfortunately, the shops that work with insurance companies in this way do not always do the best work possible and often place the insurance company’s interests above any individual vehicle owner’s, which is why crash victims need to understand that they are not required to follow instructions like this from their insurance company.

In fact, Arizona Revised Statutes § 20-468 explicitly gives drivers in Phoenix the right to choose what repair facility they take their vehicle to after an auto accident and imposes some additional restrictions on how insurers can interact with repair shops and with the repair process as a whole. The only exception to this rule is for repairs to damaged vehicle glass, in which case the insurance company can require a policyholder to seek services from a specific shop or provider.

What If a Vehicle is “Totaled” in a Crash Caused by Someone Else?

If someone else negligently causes a crash which leads to another person’s car being damaged so severely that it cannot be repaired, the at-fault party’s car insurance provider should provide a payout equal to the “totaled” car’s actual cash value (ACV). Someone who totals their car in an accident they were at fault for can seek the same type of reimbursement from their own insurance provider if they have “collision” coverage, but they would likely be subject to a deductible determined by their specific policy.

As they do in many other stages of the car accident claims process, however, car insurance companies often try to lowball crash victims when estimating the ACV of their vehicle. Support from seasoned legal counsel can be vital to getting paid fairly for a totaled vehicle by negotiating for an increased settlement offer based on all available evidence.

A Phoenix, AZ Attorney Can Answer Questions About What Happens to Vehicles Involved in Car Accidents

Cars often hold sentimental value for their drivers and owners, which means car accidents can often be emotionally stressful on top of financially and physically damaging. Fortunately, you have more rights than you may think when it comes to getting your car repaired or replaced after a serious wreck, as well as help available from capable legal professionals in enforcing those rights.

Phillips Law Group has been locally owned and operated for more than 30 years, and we are not afraid to fight on your behalf the same way we have for thousands of other Phoenix residents in the past. Contact a member of our team today to learn more about your legal options during a free initial consultation.

You are under no obligation to work with us after our first meeting, but we are confident we can provide you with the guidance you need and deserve to move forward after a wreck. Please do not hesitate to reach out  —we look forward to hearing from you and hope to soon. Give our firm a call today to learn more.