Diminished Value

I own a 2011 Toyota that got roughed up in an accident. My vehicle was parked legally. The other driver was probably not paying attention and rammed it from behind. The other driver is underaged, unlicensed, was riding with other underaged occupants. That driver is 100% at fault. So far the damages to my truck is $7,000, however the body shop hasnt begun the tear down to get to the repairs. Damages can increase if more damages are found.

Went to the KBB site to find out my cars value pre and post accident. Shows a difference of almost $4k. How do I recoup this amount? Do I go after the other person’s parents, their insurer, or both? Best to use a lawyer for this type of claim? Thanks

I own this vehicle, not leased.

Kbb doesn’t have an option to value with accident.

Diminished value is tough to prove. Typically you will need to sell to claim diminished value.


IIRC, when asking for a cash offer it asks to enter accident details, the $ amount of the accident claim etc. The difference was quite substantial.

Interesting… Never explored the cash offer side.

Still diminished value is a tough claim. I had a similar case on a truck with 42K in repairs…


It sucks to say the least. Was planning on selling the truck sometime next year.

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usually you submit with their insurer. If they are maxed out, then you can sue in small claims. Get a couple of different quotes post repair, judges like to see options, but will usually award you the smallest amount.

You should consult a lawyer that deals with this area of law.

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A loss of 4k in value is hardly worth the lawyer’s time I would imagine.

Diminished value is super tough to prove. It’s hard enough to prove on a new vehicle much less a 2011 plus every state is different. You have states like Georgia where they have an actual formula (17c) to almost everyone else where the bar is extremely high to getting it paid out. This claim is going to go through the insurance company not the parents. The insurance company will be on this claim unless you hit policy limits which could happen if they are carrying state minimum limits (I’m looking at you California and others with you’re ludicrous 5k state minimum for property damage). Most insurance companies are going to take the stance that a vehicle repaired to professional standards is not going to be diminished in value. The burden is going to be on you to prove the diminished value to the insurance company which will be tough due to all of the unknowns. A newer vehicle is easier to prove because more is known about the previous condition of the vehicle. A 2011 with years of miles on it will be harder to quantify what the pre accident ACV is due to condition, other accidents, etc. I can’t imagine an adjuster will accept KBB as reputable proof in order to pay a DV claim. You can get an appraisal done on the car but those are shaky at best and you will also have to pay for that. I also doubt an attorney would take this up due to the small amount of money in play for the amount of time required. One thing that might work is ask for the DV and bring up the KBB amounts you are seeing. That might net you $150-$300 of go away money. Sorry that’s probably not what you wanted to hear but proving this DV claims is tough. Best of luck!

Our research clearly shows that any accident history will diminished the value of a car by 10%-15% while frame damage or air bag deployment results in a loss in value of approximately 40% of the pre-accident fair market value.

OP should you take up the services of someone like above please let us know how it goes. I see them post respond to posts on many message boards when DV is brought up and don’t see a lot of end results on those boards. Not saying they can’t do anything to help you out but I am legitimately curious to see if it goes well.

He doesn’t need to hire someone to help since he won’t get much back anyway. I agree that it will never be more than a couple of hundred $$ on a 2011 car. Paid out DV will never be equal to the actual loss on an old car, I believe. I received about 5% on a 6 months old $31K Subaru.

Lesson learned - please drive carefully, stop typing LH replies and driving at the same time.

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The kid was unlicensed so the insurance of what I presume is his parents car likely isn’t going to cover him although this depends on the state laws. The OP hasn’t said what insurance company he is working with but I presume it is his own. How much is your car worth with cause you really want insurance to total it. That seems like it will be the best outcome for you.

These types of situations often create difficult choices for parents. If they say they let the kid drive the car, they are on the hook for full damage likely without any help from their insurance. If they say kid took car without permission, they may avoid liability but kid could be charged with GTA.

And yeah, the insurance limits now are insanely low. Creates so many situations where people can’t cover cost of damage. California being among the worst offenders.

I’m still waiting on the final police report. I am working with my insurance at the moment. My insurance company says that it seems like the other parties insurance is taking responsibility. They’re USAA. Just pisses me off that my cars value can take a hit and not a damn thing I can do about it. Truck is worth north of 18k pre-accident. So far 7k in damages, so not sure how much more till it qualifies as a total loss.

Of course your truck takes a hit after an accident. That’s how the market works…

Would you pay equal money value for a truck with accident history as you would one without an accident reported? I know I wouldn’t.

If this is any help…A car hit my parked X5 (not leased and owned too). It was a parked car and never been in an accident. I had the car repaired and I also filed a diminished value claim with the at fault insurance company. I had wrote a letter for the reason of the claim and then submitted 2 to 3 statements of what my car value was with accident, and what it would have been without accident. I got the statements from different car dealerships. This was back in the days when there weren’t many websites providing resale info.
And yes, I did get the difference in loss from their insurance company.