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What Does It Mean To Total My Vehicle?

Most of us have heard this question after an accident, “Was your car totaled?” In this post, we explore the meaning of this phrase, and why insurance companies will “total” a vehicle.

The term “total” means that if you are in an auto accident and your insurance company has elected not to fix your vehicle, instead simply giving you a check for the actual cash value of your vehicle at that time.

Now, there is often some confusion that comes with the term “totaled.” This is because, after a car accident, your car can be completely wrecked and be hardly recognizable as a car. Accidents like this are hard on your vehicle as there is clearly no amount of money that can fix the car without replacing every single piece on the vehicle. Now, where it can become confusing is if you are involved in a minor accident, your car still looks like a car, and your insurance company still decides to “total” your vehicle.


  • Cash Value
    • Regardless of your loan, or personal value of the vehicle, your insurance company will look at the real cash value of your vehicle at the time of your accident.
  • Cost Of Repair
    • Once the cash value of your car is determined, you will need to get a repair estimate for your vehicle. Once this is done, you send this cost of repair to your insurance company. Now, if your cost of repair is even $1 more than the cash value of your vehicle, your insurance company will more than likely pay you for the cash value of your vehicle minus your insurance deductible.

The Cash Value Of My Car Is Not Enough For  New Car

Of course, each person has a different situation; however, a lot of us will be upset when learning about the true cash value of your vehicle at the time of an accident. This is because you may still be paying a loan on the vehicle, and the loan amount may exceed the cash value of your vehicle. Meaning that you could still be responsible for the balance of the loan after receiving a check from your insurance company for your vehicle. Or you may simply feel like it is not enough money to replace your current car with the new version of the vehicle that you were driving.

Contact Us For A Quote

If you are interested in learning more about the cash value of your vehicle or gap insurance or if you are simply seeking new car insurance, contact our team at Maryland Auto Insurance Provider Online.

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