Q: The accident I was in was determined not to be my
fault. The insurance company is offering far less for
my vehicle than what I owe. Don't they have to at least
pay off my loan?
A: No. The insurance company is not required to take
into consideration any outstanding loan on the vehicle.
They generally are only required to pay the fair market
value of the vehicle.
Q: May I keep my auto if I have a claim and the insurance
company declares it a total loss?
A: Your insurance company is entitled to any salvage
value your auto may have and will typically take title
to your auto when it pays your claim. You may be able
to negotiate with your insurance company to purchase
the vehicle from them.
Q: Am I entitled to a rental vehicle and for how long?
A: If your personal automobile insurance policy has
an endorsement for rental coverage, or "rental
reimbursement" clause, you may be entitled to reimbursement
for the cost of a rental vehicle while you are waiting
for your vehicle to be repaired within your policy limits.
If you're collecting for your damages from a company
other than your own, your state may or may not have
a law requiring rental reimbursement. Typically, insurance
companies allow for a rental vehicle for a specific
amount of time once they determine their insured is
Q: Do I have to hire a lawyer to defend me if I'm sued
because of an auto accident?
A: No. The liability portion of your automobile insurance
provides for representation by the insurance company.
The insurance company provides the lawyer but he or
she represents you, not the insurance company.