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Guide to Diminished Value Claims in Arizona

September 18, 2023 Legal Team

Diminished value claims are an important aspect of auto accident law that many people may overlook after a collision. In Arizona, these claims come into play because your vehicle’s market value lessens due to being involved in an accident – even if repairs have been made. Through this process, you could recoup the lost value from the party responsible for damages.

Guide to Diminished Value Claims in Arizona

As you may be aware, any past damage caused by accidents must be disclosed when you attempt to sell or trade in your car. This can lower its resale price significantly and affect its general market attractiveness – hence giving rise to diminished value (DV) claims.

Breaking this down further, there are three types of diminished values recognized in Arizona:

  1. Inherent Diminished Value: This is the most recognized form and is a foundational element for any additional forms of DV claims. Simply put, inherent diminished value refers to the automatic loss in market price because your vehicle has a documented history of an accident.
  2. Repair-Related Diminished Value: As its name suggests, this kind pertains directly to how well or poorly your vehicle’s repairs were carried out after an accident. It’s generally understood that no repair can return vehicles back to their pre-collision state completely, but this goes beyond just identifying repaired damage. It also encompasses any residual problems as a result of poorly executed work.
  3. Insurer-Related Diminished Value: This occurs when an insurance company allows the use of aftermarket parts or components not made by the original manufacturer during repairs. It infers that since this vehicle was not restored with OEM (original equipment manufacturer) parts, there will be a further drop in its market worth.

These different types of diminished values are critical to know if you wish to receive accurate and fair compensation after an accident.

Factors Considered in Diminished Value Claims

In Arizona, drivers not at fault in an accident have the right to file a diminished value claim. Every vehicle’s diminished value is unique and therefore cannot be calculated by some universal formula. Rather, it requires an expert who knows how various factors impact your car’s potential loss in its worth.

These contributing calculations may include aspects of your car like the year, make, model, mileage of the vehicle.

The type of damage your car sustains in an accident also significantly influences its diminished value. Cosmetic damages, such as scratches or minor dents, generally have a lesser impact compared to serious structural damages. These more severe repairs can lead to higher depreciation since potential buyers might worry about the vehicle’s safety and longevity.

Proving Diminished Value

To successfully claim diminished value and ascertain the true extent of your loss, you may need an expert appraisal conducted based on current industry standards. 

In addition, offers to purchase or trade-in your damaged vehicle can be a useful tool for establishing its diminished value. These numbers tend to reflect the real-world impact of the car’s history and resulting depreciation, providing concrete evidence for any negotiation with insurance adjusters over the worth of your claim.

No Requirement To Sell or Trade-In Vehicle To Prove Diminished Value

It’s worth noting that in Arizona, you are under no obligation to sell your damaged vehicle to establish its diminished value. This model supports both public policy and state law, stressing the fact that the mere occurrence of an accident is more than enough proof for depreciation.

If you have any questions or need help with a diminished value claim, we’re here for you. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation.