One of the most frequently asked questions that we get at BenGlassLaw is whether or not you need an attorney for a property damage claim. This is one of those questions that everyone has, but few really look into it after their car is totalled in an accident before they just go for the easiest and quickest solution.
First off, these cases are difficult to deal with for consumers. With property damage, you are unlikely to ever recover the full amount of the perceived value of the vehicle after an accident. You will regain the "reasonable value" of the car, which is often much lower. This is also why cars end up considered "totaled" at a lower damage level than you would have expected.
If you decide that you want to recover some value through a property damage claim, we don't necessarily recommend that you hire an attorney. It's a small amount of money. and giving an attorney any piece of that pie reduces an already diminunitive settlement.
Usually when someone takes on an attorney to handle a case such as this, it's to take the stress out of the picture for them. It's not exactly fun sorting through what can be a lengthy process, but if your time is valuable enough to budget an attorney, then this isn't always a bad idea.
If your car was not totaled in an accident, you can recover the reasonable cost of the repair plus the dimunation of value. However, this will likely require an expert to testify on your behalf, which immediately drives up the cost of the claim.
Overall, property damage claims are never a good deal if your car is damaged in an accident. However, if you are interested in learning more about your claim or have some questions, you can download a FREE copy of my book 5 Deadly Sins that Can Wreck Your Injury Claim, to learn more about personal injury claims.
If you have a question for Ben, you can submit it confidentially online at JustAskBenGlass.com.