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How Much Does a Car Accident Actually Cost?

6 February 2020 No Comment

The final total of a vehicle accident can vary widely. The costs depend on the number of vehicles and people involved. And, obviously, the extent of the damage. In this article, we will be looking at all the costs involved in a car accident, not just the cost of the vehicle repairs.

Costs at the Scene

The first set of expenses take place at the scene of the accident. These include:

  • damage to the vehicle;
  • personal items destroyed;
  • any property damage at the scene.

Medical staff and other rescue personnel could become an expense if the accident involved any injuries. Moreover, many incidents require tow trucks to remove disabled vehicles, significantly increasing costs.

Early Expenses

More costs may accumulate on the day of the event. That’s even after people leave the accident scene. Vehicle repair facilities may immediately begin their daily storage fee for any vehicles brought to them by a tow truck. The police on the scene may write tickets for things that led to the accident or for other violations.

Medical costs can begin to pile up with a visit to the ER. Don’t forget to add any prescriptions, like pain relievers, the victims need. Parents could face extra daycare or babysitter costs while they get medical care. If the vehicle owner cannot drive their vehicle, they may need to hire a taxi or rideshare service to get home from the accident scene or the hospital.

Fees That May Arise

Follow-up Appointments

Accident injuries lead to follow-up appointments with a doctor. They may need surgery or other medical care for months or longer after the accident.

Injuries often mean lost time at work and the need to hire people to help with basic chores like lawn mowing or grocery shopping. Many drivers pay for a rental vehicle or begin to use public transportation while repairs take place to their vehicles.

Insurance companies want copies of all reports, so drivers must retrieve a copy of their police report. Any visits to a doctor, the insurance office, or to a rehabilitation facility could include parking fees, road tolls, and other transportation expenses.

Insurance Decides to Total Your Car

Drivers should also know what happens when insurance totals your car. Totaled cars are those that would cost more than their current value to repair. The insurer will pay what they consider the value is of the vehicle minus the deductible. They will send the check to any lienholder or the owner if the vehicle does not have a lien.

The owner must pay the difference if the amount the insurance company pays does not cover the cost of the remaining loan on the vehicle. Also, the driver will no longer have their vehicle and will need to buy another without a trade-in. Drivers with gap insurance will not have to worry about any remaining balance. Drivers also do not pay their deductible if the at-fault driver was someone else.

Charges Occurring Much Later

Drivers should also know the long-term effects of what happens when insurance totals your car. An accident may cause insurance rates to rise. Keep in mind that a new vehicle purchase includes the price of the loan, sales tax, and registration fees.

In addition, drivers found at-fault have the risk of a lawsuit going against them. Injured drivers may still need to undergo rehabilitation for years after their injury occurred. Any joint injury could cause arthritis that would require lifelong treatment.

A vehicle accident could include nothing more than a little inconvenience or it could become a series of expenses that continue for years. Adequate insurance, safe driving practices, and reliable and durable vehicles may lower the cost each driver pays.

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