WHAT DO I DO WITH MY VEHICLE IN THIS SITUATION ?
DID YOU KNOW IT IS YOUR RIGHT TO KEEP A VEHICLE YOU OWN IF IT IS SUBJECT TO AN INSURANCE CLAIM ?
Yes, thats correct, your insurance company will usually try their best to make the vehicle stay with the, as everything will already be put in place by them to have youre vehicle taken to an auction house wherebnowadays it costs the insurance company big timey it will be sold to the highest bidder and quite often the insurance company will make very good money from doing this byt also sometimes and in my opinion many times they will lose out as the fees charged by these auction houses are becoming extreme and nowadays it usually costs the insurance company big time to sort a vehicle out after either a fault or no fault accident.
This also covers stolen vehicles, vandalised vehicles etc, they are all a problem for the typical insurance company.
WHERE DO WE COME INTO THIS SITUATION ?
Well further below are the steps you should take in order to keep the car yourself and then you have options which will all see you financially better off and therefore mean that losing your car will at least mean you will be financially better off than you would otherwise be normally.
The brief of it is that typically an incident has occured with your vehicle and it is recovered at the scene and taken away by an RECOVERY COMPANY acting on behalf of the Insurance Company (now called the I-C). They will take it back to a compound awaiting assessment from a representative of the I-C.
Sometimes the I-C Representative has to come from far away out of town, maybe somewhere like Scotland and that could mean that it is maybe one or two weeks before your vehicle is even assessed. During this time your vehicle is accumulating storage fees and charges for every day that the RECOVERY AGENT has the vehicle parked on their land, these fees are at least £25 per day but typically nowadays in 2019 / 2020, the storage charges are upwards of £35 per day and in some cases as high as £60 per day.
This costs the Insurance Company and if your vehicle was involved in accident which was your fault then all other vehicles involved in the accident would be also in storage and the fees charged to your insurance company if the accident was your fault.
If the accident was not your fault and there is another guilty party then their Insurance Company will be paying all the storage charges but ultimately somebody somewhere is paying extortionate storage fees on a daily basis.
Also there are the initial recovery charges, the Police may occasionally claim, if any property was damaged then there would be a claim from the owner of the property even if it was a Council street sign or something.
There could be and usually is a claim for somekind of personal injury to a single or multiple parties, this again ramps up the charges for the Insurance Company.
Then after all of this the vehicle involved in this may well get written off and then the Insurance Company would have lost thousands, even if your car was only worth £500 because they would still have everything else to settle up with the other companies for Recovery, Storage, Auctions etc.
If the vehicle is written off or the owner decides he or she no longer want the vehicle (yes it is your right to not have the vehicle repaired if you so wish, you DO NOT have to have it repaired, you can take a settlement figure from the Insurance Company and put it towards the cost of another vehicle and your vehicle then becomes the property of the Insurance Company once you have received payment.
If you choose to have your vehicle repaired then you should inspect your vehicle at various stages throughout the repair process as there are certain dodgy insurance approved repairers out there who will do an inadequate repair to your vehicle but still claim full repair costs from the Insurance Company.
This is not always the fault of the repairer as sometimes the Insurance Company would maybe insist that the repair be done a certain way or the repair done to a certain cost and then the repairer is forced to cut corners.
This may surprise you but this is actually what can happen in this industry and this is why you should inspect your vehicle at various stages throughout the repair process. The repairer cannot refuse to do this as legally the vehicle they are working on is still yours and you have your statutory rights to see your vehicle at any time you please. It is also a good idea to take some pictured of the vehicle during this process in case you need then later to prove a bad repair. DO NOT LET ANYONE TELL YOU OTHERWISE. If they try this then go straight to the Insurance Ombudsman or Trading Standards.
If the vehicle is not going to be repaired and has been deemed a TOTAL LOSS (a write-off) then the Insurance Company will have the vehicle collected on a transporter and sent to the Auction House (more costs again). The Auction House will put the vehicle on an auction to be sold for parts or sold for repair so the vehicle can be used on the road again (depending on the Category record against the vehicle by the Assessor). These Categories are all listed further down on this page.
During the auction the vehicle will always sell for a certain amount of money and the Insurance Company will almost always never see any of this money as the money from the sale will go towards paying the Assessor, the Recovery Company, the Auction House etc…
THIS IS WHERE WE COME IN AND WHERE WE CAN ASSIST BOTH YOU AND YOUR INSURANCE COMPANY…
If your vehicle was involved in an accident for example then you can call us up straight away, we can collect and store your vehicle, we can repair it if necessary as we have a large 14 ramp garage as well as a bodyshop. We also own a motor factor so we have access to any necessary parts and we also own an engineering / engine re-manufacturing business so we can take care of everything from one location thereby saving your Insurance Company money on having to move your vehicle several times from place to place.
We can also help your Insurance Company because we can purchase the company directly from them in the event of a write-off and you not wanting the vehicle back, this again will save your Insurance Company probably around £1000 – £2000 in Storage Fees, less time paying for a Courtesy Car, Auction Fees etc.
Another version of this scenario is that after a vehicle is taken away from you after an incident, it is your absolute right to be able to buy the vehicle back for salvage value which sometimes is as little as £50. Typically the Insurance Company will never offer this so you have to ask about it and it is something they cannot refuse as technically it is still your property until any settlement value is agreed and you receive the payment from the Insurance Company. Only after you have received the payout from them is it no longer your right to decide what happens to your vehicle as it then becomes the property of the Insurance Company but right up to that moment, all decisions are yours to make without duress.
If you want to retain your vehicle and have it brought back to you or brought straight to us then your Insurance Company must deliver it to us or if it is close by then we will collect it.
You would agree a salvage figure for your vehicle which would then be deducted from your overall payout, here is an example…
Audi A3 1.9 TDI 2010 – pre-accident value = £2250. … written off in an accident … Salvage Value now = £250 and Registered as Category S (S = Structural Damage) same as the old Category C … we would then give you around £500 for this vehicle meaning you get more money for your loss of the vehicle, the Insurance Company is happier because they have not had to take the Russian Roulette option of an Auction and all the fees to go with it and overall it is a much better solution, a win win for everyone concerned as opposed to paying extortionate Storage and Auction fees.
You may even get your next Insurance quote reduced as a result of this.
We can also assist with Courtesy Vehicles in the event of any type of fault / non-fault accident so please get in touch with us and see how we can help you.