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Model 3 loss of use claim

farmwee

New Member
Jan 8, 2021
2
-1
Madison, WI
Hi all,

First post here, much appreciate your help with pursuing a loss of use third party claim (the other driver's insurance company is MetLife).

I'll keep the message short but am happy to provide more information and edit this post if there is interest.

I was in an accident in November 2020 (my Model 3 was a year old at that point). The other driver was 100% at fault, accepted responsibility. I also had video evidence of the accident.

The driver's insurance company agreed in a couple of days to pay for the repairs at a Tesla approved body shop (in WI). Repairs came out to about $4K.

After getting the car back, I informed the adjuster that I intend to pursue a diminished value claim. They gave me a ridiculously low value but after about 1 month of back and forth (happy to provide more details), they gave me an offer for approx $5K. Not intending to drag it on any further, I accepted it (was about 80% of the average DV estimates I received from a few different appraisers).

For loss of use, I am running into some difficulties. The car was in the repair shop for 16 days. The insurance company has offered me $25/day for 14 days. I've seen elsewhere on this forum about providing rental costs from Turo to back up my claim. My questions are:

  1. Should the loss of use calculations be based on a "similar" car? If so, it will be a Model 3. Or any car? $25/day would probably be for a sub-compact or compact car. I did not rent a car during this period. My understanding is that in WI, loss of use claims are valid even if one does not rent a car.
  2. Elsewhere on this forum, I've read that to do the claim, I must inform the other insurance company in writing about what I am requesting. Any pointers on what this letter must contain and who it should be addressed to?
  3. If I want to proceed to small claims court, will this be against the other driver or the driver's insurance company? Should I talk to the other driver in advance before filing the paperwork?
Thanks so much in advance.
 

Pkmmte

Le meow
Sep 19, 2017
694
1,181
Los Angeles, California
Hi all,

First post here, much appreciate your help with pursuing a loss of use third party claim (the other driver's insurance company is MetLife).

I'll keep the message short but am happy to provide more information and edit this post if there is interest.

I was in an accident in November 2020 (my Model 3 was a year old at that point). The other driver was 100% at fault, accepted responsibility. I also had video evidence of the accident.

The driver's insurance company agreed in a couple of days to pay for the repairs at a Tesla approved body shop (in WI). Repairs came out to about $4K.

After getting the car back, I informed the adjuster that I intend to pursue a diminished value claim. They gave me a ridiculously low value but after about 1 month of back and forth (happy to provide more details), they gave me an offer for approx $5K. Not intending to drag it on any further, I accepted it (was about 80% of the average DV estimates I received from a few different appraisers).

For loss of use, I am running into some difficulties. The car was in the repair shop for 16 days. The insurance company has offered me $25/day for 14 days. I've seen elsewhere on this forum about providing rental costs from Turo to back up my claim. My questions are:

  1. Should the loss of use calculations be based on a "similar" car? If so, it will be a Model 3. Or any car? $25/day would probably be for a sub-compact or compact car. I did not rent a car during this period. My understanding is that in WI, loss of use claims are valid even if one does not rent a car.
  2. Elsewhere on this forum, I've read that to do the claim, I must inform the other insurance company in writing about what I am requesting. Any pointers on what this letter must contain and who it should be addressed to?
  3. If I want to proceed to small claims court, will this be against the other driver or the driver's insurance company? Should I talk to the other driver in advance before filing the paperwork?
Thanks so much in advance.
1. They “should” give you an equivalent vehicle for rent. Of course, they always try to fight it and give you the cheapest thing they can offer. From my experience, however, loss of use has been difficult to achieve compared to a rental. The only time I’ve gotten that was from AAA, and they even gave me an equivalent rental on top of that.

2. No idea. Sorry.

3. It’s against the driver. Their insurance will then be obligated to help them. I’ve personally never pursued this path but, from my understanding, you have to notify the driver before you can even submit the paperwork. Not sure if that varies by location.
 

farmwee

New Member
Jan 8, 2021
2
-1
Madison, WI
1. They “should” give you an equivalent vehicle for rent. Of course, they always try to fight it and give you the cheapest thing they can offer. From my experience, however, loss of use has been difficult to achieve compared to a rental. The only time I’ve gotten that was from AAA, and they even gave me an equivalent rental on top of that.

2. No idea. Sorry.

3. It’s against the driver. Their insurance will then be obligated to help them. I’ve personally never pursued this path but, from my understanding, you have to notify the driver before you can even submit the paperwork. Not sure if that varies by location.

Thanks so much.

Are there websites which provide boilerplate letters for how the notification, either to the other driver's insurance company or to the other driver, should be phrased?
 

Big Dog

Active Member
Mar 7, 2016
1,643
1,637
Irvine, CA
yes, they should get you an equivalent vehicle, but that does not necessarily mean a Tesla, it generally means same size: compact, mid-sized, SUV. If they have a contract with say, Enterprise, for a mid-sized sedan at $25.00 per day, then that is what they would offer you instead. Don't compare Enterprise's regular retail with what the insurers can get. Call your own insurer and ask them what they would pay for a mid-sized car.
 

dvguru

Member
Dec 2, 2013
9
20
Dallas
It really depends on what the case law is in your state as it pertains to loss of use. One might think a similar vehicle of the same style and class would be reasonable but its been my experience by what juries' have awarded for loss of use is more likely what could be found for the lowest price. Now in your area, county, state that could be a Tesla, but it could be a Nissan Leaf also! They are both 4 door sedan that are electric...
I suggest you get several quotes from ride sharing co's/sites in your area for a Tesla and those to justify & prove the value for the use of the vehicle of subject.
Good Luck.
 

DDHEverything

Member
Aug 13, 2020
127
69
Philly
Hi all,

First post here, much appreciate your help with pursuing a loss of use third party claim (the other driver's insurance company is MetLife).

I'll keep the message short but am happy to provide more information and edit this post if there is interest.

I was in an accident in November 2020 (my Model 3 was a year old at that point). The other driver was 100% at fault, accepted responsibility. I also had video evidence of the accident.

The driver's insurance company agreed in a couple of days to pay for the repairs at a Tesla approved body shop (in WI). Repairs came out to about $4K.

After getting the car back, I informed the adjuster that I intend to pursue a diminished value claim. They gave me a ridiculously low value but after about 1 month of back and forth (happy to provide more details), they gave me an offer for approx $5K. Not intending to drag it on any further, I accepted it (was about 80% of the average DV estimates I received from a few different appraisers).

For loss of use, I am running into some difficulties. The car was in the repair shop for 16 days. The insurance company has offered me $25/day for 14 days. I've seen elsewhere on this forum about providing rental costs from Turo to back up my claim. My questions are:

  1. Should the loss of use calculations be based on a "similar" car? If so, it will be a Model 3. Or any car? $25/day would probably be for a sub-compact or compact car. I did not rent a car during this period. My understanding is that in WI, loss of use claims are valid even if one does not rent a car.
  2. Elsewhere on this forum, I've read that to do the claim, I must inform the other insurance company in writing about what I am requesting. Any pointers on what this letter must contain and who it should be addressed to?
  3. If I want to proceed to small claims court, will this be against the other driver or the driver's insurance company? Should I talk to the other driver in advance before filing the paperwork?
Thanks so much in advance.

So you want to go to small claims court because you have to drive a mediocre car for two weeks? Seems like you’ve already spent an unreasonable amount of time on this. Drive the mediocre car for a couple weeks and you’ll enjoy your Tesla that much more.
 

Knightshade

Well-Known Member
Jul 31, 2017
12,814
19,000
NC
If you want a reasonable ask it would be this:

The typical total rental car cost (including whatever taxes and fees) of a 4 door sedan of comparable size/storage. Yes- this would be an ICE vehicle. No it would likely NOT be a subcompact.

plus

A typical amount that 14 days of gasoline would cost you- minus what 14 days of charging your Tesla would cost you.
 
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Robert A

Member
May 27, 2019
127
39
Los Angeles
I fought and won both a DV claim and a loss of use claim against State Farm in CA on a BMW 5 Series. You have to read the statutes and interpretations in your state. However, I can tell you that an equivalent car is something of comparable value to your own. In the case of a BMW 5 Series, that includes an Audi A6 and a MBZ E class. In the case of a Tesla Model 3, it's likely a Tesla Model 3 because there's nothing comparable at present.

To arrive at the right figure, shop pricing for the full 14-day rental from a regular rental agency (not Turo). Use the lowest available price, after taking into account all possible discounts. Then subtract the actual price the insurance company paid for the car that you actually got. That's your claim. Then settle for something slightly less and call it a day.

Btw, 80% on a DV claim without having to go to court is excellent. DV appraisers have no real way to ascertain the inherent loss after a repair because there is no comparable data on damaged cars. Every damage is different and the appraiser's assessment of value is largely driven by a mixture of unsupported opinion and a desire to please the client.
 

Fernand

Active Member
Mar 22, 2019
1,557
1,566
Northern california
16 days in an ICE car? I think you should hurry up with your case, before the details of your suffering get fuzzy in your mind, and you won't be able to act out the appropriate level of devastation for the jury, when cross-examined in court.
 
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