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How To Determine if a Car Is Totaled

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May 6, 2021—What does it actually mean for a car to be totaled? Gary Wickert, an insurance trial lawyer and leading expert on insurance subrogation, recently wrote an article breaking down what it means to "total" a vehicle. 


Written in Claims Journal, an insurance resource and news outlet, Wickert describes the various laws and differences throughout the states that make declaring a vehicle "totaled" under law so difficult. 


“Everybody knows what it means to ‘total’ a vehicle. But very few people actually understand the relationship between a totaled vehicle and state law regarding when such a vehicle can be titled and driven on public roads. Because these concepts play a key role in understanding collision losses and subsequent subrogation efforts, we pull back the curtains on these mystical terms in this article,” Wickert writes. 


Is it based on actual cash value? Does how old the car and how many miles it has on it affect the law? The answer depends on what state you’re in. Wickert discusses those intricacies and how they relate to first-party claims. 


Click here to read the full article.

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