How to Handle a Total Car Loss

Important steps in handling a total loss vehicle claim.


It’s what every motorist dreads to hear – “Your vehicle is a total loss.” Whether you were involved in a significant auto accident and expected the worst, or you bumped into something which damaged an essential component of your vehicle’s integrity, writing your car off can be stressful. To understand what you should do when handing a total loss claim, read on.

  • Locate your vehicle’s title

The title is required to process a total loss vehicle. Make sure you find this document and keep your auto documents organized so that you can move forward with the settlement process quickly and efficiently.

  • Know your lienholder

A lienholder is a financial institution that has either leased a vehicle to you or given you money on loan to purchase the vehicle. The lienholder’s information is important to gather as they should know about the incident and how the vehicle has been written off because they have an insurable interest in the vehicle. When a vehicle is deemed a total loss, the lienholder needs to be notified and they will provide a ‘letter of guarantee’ which will state what the current payoff is for the loan. If you have gap insurance, your coverage will help you pay for the remaining debt you owe.

  • Mail completed paperwork quickly

Total loss auto accidents can require a significant amount of paperwork. An agreement needs to be reached on the pay-out amount of the totalled vehicle. Be sure to mail out your documents as promptly as possible so that the claims process can move forward quickly.

Be sure that you are working with reliable insurance professionals who have your best interest in mind. For reliable and affordable auto insurance coverage, contact the professionals at Lou Aggetta Insurance Services.