My question involves insurance law for the state of: CA
my friend was hit while parked in the emergency lane. the other driver's insurance accepted full liability and sent an inspector. afterwards, over the phone (nothing in writing), they estimated about $4.5k worth of repairs, and offered about $4.3k to total her car, or $3.5k if she wants to keep it. (they also pressured her to give an answer by the next morning)
I looked at cars for sale with same year, model, and mileage in the area (they are all from car dealers), and they go for about $4-5.5k. I told her to ask for more.
what I don't understand is, why is the 3rd party insurance allowed to deduct the salvage value from the value of her car? if repairs and total loss value are so close to each other, shouldn't she be given the full value of the car, as she can probably get it repaired for that amount?
I understand that, if it's a 1st party claim, your insurance I imagine has it in your contract that they decide whether it's a total loss or not. I also understand that you can refuse a total loss determination by a 3rd party insurance, but are they still allowed to deduct the salvage value?
Also, if you accept the lowered value, are you usually going to end up with a salvage title? I told her she should get something in writing to make an informed decision, since salvage titles are not as easy to insurance. I'm worried she thinks she keeps her car with a normal title but then finds out it's getting a salvage title. I am wondering if her accepting the lower offer means that she's giving consent to the 3rd party insurance to total the car. maybe I'm just uninformed and too distrustful but I'm paranoid when it comes to dealing with 3rd party insurances due to my personal experiences ^^