To calculate the diminished value in Georgia, you would have to take into account the amount of damage your vehicle suffered, the quality of the repairs, and how much the car was worth before the accident. A Georgia car accident lawyer can help you do this.
Determining Your Car’s Diminished Value
To calculate the diminished value in Georgia, your attorney will have to use a mathematical formula, such as the 17c diminished value formula. This involves taking your car’s various values and multiplying them in a particular way to arrive at a fair dollar amount.
As you may imagine, coming up with the correct values and combining them properly can be tricky. This is why hiring a law firm is in your best interest. They can:
- Explain in greater detail which formula they will use, why, and how it works
- Walk you through how they arrived at a particular number for your car’s diminished value
- Collect evidence that supports their assessment and helps prove to the liable party that they should pay what you ask for
- Disprove the liable party’s claim that your car was not damaged too badly or that they are not responsible for the damage (e.g., they may claim your car was damaged before the accident)
- Negotiate with the liable party or their insurance company, if they seem hesitant to pay what you deserve based on what the evidence and formulas show
While you can find diminished value calculators online, it is better to hire a personal injury law firm in your area that can:
- See your car in person: Being able to personally examine the car and/or hire an expert to examine the car is a big advantage. An expert may be able to notice things that you and your lawyer miss.
- Evaluate evidence: Unlike an online tool, your lawyer can look at materials such as photos of your car, video footage of the accident, and statements from car experts to better evaluate what happened.
- Tell you about the situation locally: Laws regarding diminished value may change depending on where you live. A firm that serves your area can make sure that you follow all applicable regulations when calculating damages and filing a case.
It is vital to correctly calculate your car’s diminished value. Otherwise, you could end up losing thousands of dollars.
For a free legal consultation, call 404-214-2001
Why Does Your Car Lose Value After an Accident?
There are several reasons why a car loses value after being involved in a car accident, even if the accident was not your fault. These include the fact that:
Many People Do Not Want Repaired Cars
Even if you can fix your car to the point where it looks and operates as well as it did before the crash, you may still have trouble selling it. A lot of buyers will be scared off by the fact that your car was in an accident, no matter how competently it was repaired.
Repairs Are Not Always Perfect
Some mechanics do the best they can on every vehicle. Others cut corners by using substandard materials or failing to perform the right kind of repair for the situation. Your car might still work after such a repair job, but it might not look as good as before, or its “life expectancy” might be cut short.
Alternatively, you might not be able to afford the kind of repairs that your car really needs. This could force you to make do with a lesser repair job.
It may help you to know that you have the right to sue the at-fault party for repair expenses as well as diminished value.
Accident Vehicles Cannot Always Be Repaired
Depending on how badly your car was damaged and where it was hit, a mechanic might not be able to do anything for you.
If your car was totaled, your diminished value claim will likely be very high. In addition to that money, your lawyer could sue for the cost of purchasing a new car of equal value. (“Equal value” in this case refers to the vehicle’s pre-accident value.)
You Could Sue for More Than Diminished Value
Recovering your car’s diminished value is very important, but it is probably not the only type of loss you suffered because of the collision. You may have experienced (or continue to experience):
- Physical suffering, such as pain, discomfort, disability, or disfigurement
- Emotional suffering, such as trauma, mental illness, loss of consortium, or reduced quality of life
- Professional losses, such as lost wages, benefits, earning capacity, or employment opportunities
- Financial setbacks, such as the cost of medical care, repairs, or other accident-related expenses
If your loved one lost their life in the collision, you could also have sustained loss of companionship, loss of financial support, and the cost of arranging a funeral service.
A car accident lawyer could determine—and fight for—exactly how much you are entitled to for each of these damages. To do so, they would follow many of the same steps necessary to establish your car’s diminished value, including:
- Collecting evidence
- Using the appropriate mathematical formula
- Negotiating a settlement with the liable party or taking your case directly to trial
Deadlines for Seeking Compensation
Georgia law, found at O.C.G.A. § 9-3-33, generally gives you two years from the accident date to take action against the responsible party. In other words, if you want to recover compensation for diminished value and other losses, you have two years to file your case.
This deadline may vary, depending on your case’s details, and you could potentially receive an extension if the court feels that you really need it. The sooner you talk to an attorney about your accident, the sooner they can help you recover all of the damages you need.
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We Can Help You Sue for Diminished Value
If your car was damaged in an accident that was not your fault, you could ask the liable party to reimburse you for your vehicle’s lost value. A car accident attorney from Kaine Law can tell you how to calculate the diminished value in Georgia and fight for that amount for you. Call today for a free consultation.