Car Accidents

What are Diminished Value Claims in Texas?

Posted by: Kemmy Law Firm

Property damages are some of the most common losses people endure following a car accident in Texas. However, when you are hoping to maximize the compensation you are awarded, insurance and civil claims may not be enough.

You may need to pursue a diminished value claim if you hope to recover every single loss. However, it is not uncommon for people to have no idea what a diminished value claim is or how to pursue one.

What Is a Diminished Value Claim?

When you are involved in an accident and someone else is to blame, the liable party can be ordered to cover the costs of your vehicle repairs. However, even if the insurance company covers every expense related to the vehicle repairs, your vehicle will likely be worth significantly less than it was before the accident.

When you are hoping to recover the total value of your vehicle, including the lost value, filing a diminished value claim may be a good option for you.

Types of Diminished Value Claims

Multiple types of diminished value claims may be available to you depending on the circumstances of your case. These types of diminished value claims include:

  • Immediate diminished value claims
  • Inherent diminished value claims
  • Repair-related diminished value claims

Immediate Diminished Value

Immediate diminished value claims describe the difference in the resale value of your vehicle before versus directly after the accident. These apply when repairs have not been made to your car yet.

Inherent Diminished Value

Inherent diminished value claims describe the actual loss of the vehicle’s market value. These occur when you make the necessary repairs to your car, but discover that the vehicle’s value decreased because it now has a history of being damaged in a collision.

Repair-Related Diminished Value

Repair-related diminished value claims occur when there has been a loss in the value of your vehicle due to the use of less reliable or faulty repairs and the damage has yet to be fixed.

How is Diminished Value Calculated?

Before you can pursue a diminished value claim, we first need to determine the value of your losses. There are multiple ways in which your attorney may go about calculating the diminished value of your vehicle:

The Kelley Blue Book Value

First, your attorney can use the Kelley Blue Book (KBB) value to determine your diminished value. To do this, we will need to obtain the value of your vehicle before the accident and after, whether vehicle repairs have been made or not.

Alternatively, you could bring your car to an auto repair shop or used car dealer to determine what they estimate your diminished value claim to be worth. Figuring out the diminished value of your vehicle may be critical if you want to recover maximum compensation for your damages by filing an insurance claim, diminished value claim, or civil lawsuit against the liable party.

The 17c Method

The 17c method is another way to calculate the value of your vehicle after an accident. To do this, we will first need to obtain a copy of the value of your car prior to the accident—usually by checking Kelley Blue Book.

From there, we will need to apply a 10% cap and multiply the value of your vehicle by 0.10. This will determine the maximum compensation payable on your claim with the insurance company. Your lawyer will then need to determine which multiplier should be used to calculate the value of your claim. The greater the multiplier, the more structural damage there may be to your vehicle.

Next, your attorney will need to consider the mileage on your car. Insurance companies often deduct the value of mileage twice. If your car has more than 100,000 miles on the vehicle, this value will be zero dollars. Finally, your attorney will multiply your multiplier number by the number of miles on your car, to determine the total final diminished value of your claim.

If the diminished value of your claim is zero dollars, you might pursue compensation for the value of your totaled vehicle instead. Your attorney can help you figure out how much compensation you could be awarded and the opportunities you have for financial recovery after reviewing your case’s specific details.

How Long Do You Have to File Your Diminished Value Claim?

After an auto accident, the statute of limitations for diminished value claims in Texas is two years. Your claim must be filed before the statute of limitations deadline expires, or you will lose your opportunity to have your case heard in civil court or with the insurance company. The longer it takes you to get your claim filed, the less evidence we will have to support your case.

Contact a Texas Car Accident Lawyer for Help Today

Are you ready to get started on your diminished value claim? Are you interested in finding out more about how much compensation you could be awarded? If so, do not hesitate to contact a Texas car accident lawyer at Kemmy Law Firm for help.

Our firm is proud to offer no-cost, risk-free, consultations to car accident victims across Texas. Claim yours by completing our online contact form or calling us at 210-735-2233.

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When you work with us at Kemmy Law Firm, you are working with a family run firm with more than 50 years of combined experience. We are dedicated and successful trial attorneys practicing in West TX, Hobbs, NM, Midland-Odessa, and across the Permian Basin. Our team handles everything from catastrophic injury claims to complex business matters. We are here to fight for you. We dedicate our time and attention to your case and use every resource available to maximize your claim and obtain the best possible outcome.