If you’ve been in a car wreck caused by another driver, that driver’s insurance company may be responsible for your car repairs. You may decide to deal directly with the other driver’s insurance company, or you may work with your own insurer if you have collision insurance.
If you settle with your insurer, your company should make a claim against the responsible person’s insurance company and reimburse you for any deductible you paid. This is part of what you pay for when you buy collision coverage.
In addition to paying for repairs, an insurance settlement should also pay for a rental car while your vehicle is being repaired. It should also cover any towing or storage expenses you’ve incurred as well as any value that your car has lost as the result of the accident. This amount will be based on the Fair Market Value of your car before and after the accident.
If your vehicle was a total loss in the accident, the insurance settlement should cover the Fair Market Value of your vehicle.
To determine Fair Market Value yourself, you may consult such sources as local car dealers or ads for sales of vehicles that are the same year, make, and model as your vehicle, or the National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA) or the Kelley Blue Book.