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Total Loss Car Accident Calculations near Metairie, Louisiana

multi car liability

Table of Contents

    • Is your car a Total Loss in Louisiana?  Yes, if the cost to repair the vehicle is 75 percent or more of the vehicle’s total NADA value.  There is an exception made for cosmetic damage.
    • How is payment calculated if you are free of fault and your claims are against the policy for the other car responsible for an accident? There is no per se rule that the NADA guide is the only measure of actual cash value. Whether a NADA valuation is superior to another calculation is a question of fact that must be examined on a case-by-case basis.  The at fault insurer is required to look at all available sources of information to determine the value in the area where the vehicle is garaged.

  • How is payment calculated under your own policy providing for “Replacement with another of like Kind and Quality”?  The requirement for determining the actual cash value of the motor vehicle in an automobile total loss settlement are now statutorily provided for in La. R.S. 22:1892 B(5).  

There are a number of obstacles that can arise after car accidents occur. One of these obstacles is that, unfortunately, some motor vehicles are not capable of being repaired. Each year, numerous motor vehicle drivers end up being told by their insurance carrier that their vehicle has been classified a total loss. While this situation can be overwhelming, this article reviews some of the most common frequently asked questions by individuals who are faced with this situation.

What Is a Total Loss Car?

Once a vehicle is “totaled,” it is often stated that the vehicle is not capable of being repaired. In reality, the cost of repairing damages determines whether a vehicle should be classified as a total loss. As a result, even a small accident has the potential to result in a total loss, which is also sometimes referred to as a total loss threshold.

What Guide is

Used to Calculate Whether a Car is a “Total Loss” in Louisiana?

Louisiana law states the National Automobile Dealer’s Association Handbookis used to determine a vehicle’s value for purposes of calculating a Total Loss Car. If the cost to repair a vehicle is 75 percent or more of the vehicle’s total value then the automobile must be classified as a total loss. LA R.S. 32:702(14).  Even in situations where vehicles have high values, it is still possible for a total loss to occur as the vehicle may have has hidden damage, for example, hidden frame damage.  Since 2005, Louisiana has allowed motor vehicle drivers to use the cost of repairing or replacing airbags to decide whether a vehicle is a total loss, but the policyholder must agree to this in writing. LA-R.S. 22:1293 

There is an exception to the 75% threshold where cosmetic damage is involved.  Where a motor vehicle that sustains cosmetic damages caused by hail equivalent to seventy-five percent or more of its market value as a result of costs for repairs to items such as windshields, windows, and rear glass, exterior paint and paint materials, and body damage such as dents shall not be deemed a “total loss” and salvaged; however, such vehicles shall be issued a branded title indicating the vehicle has sustained hail damage. What guide is used for calculating the payment may depend on whether the payment is being made by your own insurance policy or the policy of the other car responsible for the accident.