Do I have a Diminished Value Claim?

This is normally the first question we’re asked when contacted by a client. There are a lot of variables when answering this question, and even if you do have a claim, it may not be worth pursuing. The main questions to ask yourself are:


  1. Was my vehicle worth MORE than $5000 Dollars before the accident? Most people know if their vehicle is worth more than $5000. If you’re unsure, call us, we’ll help you determine an approximate pre-accident value for your vehicle.
  2. Is there LESS than $500 Dollars  worth of damage to the vehicle? Unless your car is worth more than $15,000, chances are less than $500 dollars in damage will not affect your resale value significantly enough to warrant pursuing a Diminished Value Claim if your vehicle is worth more than $15,000+ you may still have a claim.
  3. Did my vehicle have a severe previous damage history totaling more than the current damage before the collision? If your car had a history of a previous severe collision prior to the accident, you probably don’t have a claim. Please call us to verify.
  4. Did the Car Have a CLEAN Title, and not a Branded or Salvage Title prior to the Collision? If your car had a branded title, you would probably not have a valid claim.
  5. Is my car NEWER than 10 years old? While there are older collector cars and specialty vehicles that can have Diminished Value, on the norm, if the vehicle is older than 10 years old, it probably is not worth pursuing a Diminished Value Claim. (If your vehicle is worth more than $15,000, you may still have a claim, please contact us.)
  6. Has it been several years since the accident? If it has, you should consult your state’s laws as to whether the Statute of Limitation has run out in your area. In Oregon you have up to 6 years.
  7. Has the vehicle been declared TOTALED? If your vehicle has been declared totaled, you would not be eligible to file a Diminished Value Claim, but you could get a Total Loss Appraisal to help you recover the full value of your vehicle. On average you’ll receive about 15% more with a Total Loss Appraisal. This could easily be as much as $6-7,000 extra on a new vehicle.
After answering those questions, you should know if you have a Diminished Value Claim, if you’re still not sure, please contact us and we’ll help you determine if you do.