Date registered: Sep 2004
Vehicle: 2014 E250 Bluetec 4-Matic, 1983 240D 4-Speed
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Quoted: 256 Post(s)
The best you will do is to get the actual high book value for the car. I have no idea what that is in your case. The procedure will run a pretty routine course:
Insurance company will send an adjuster out to assess the damage.
Adjuster will determine the repair costs exceed about 80% of the book value of the car, and declare it totaled. Otherwise they will fix it. For an old car that means if repairs cost more than a few hundred dollars, it is totaled.
He will offer you a lowball figure to settle, and peddle it as being fair.
You need to ask him how he determined the number. Chances are he will not respond, and you will end up dealing with a clerk at the insurance company, who will claim ignorance on evaluation methods - sort of suggest they outsource the task because it requires know how and so on. This will leave you unarmed. So, DON'T LET THE ADJUSTER LEAVE WITHOUT GETTING HIS EXAMPLES USED TO BASE HIS ASSESSMENT ON FROM HIM, or if he doesn't give you the offer on the spot, get the clerk to give you his phone number. Then, call him, tell him where you got the phone number and you have the company's permission to talk to him. In any case, get the names and addresses of the lots or junkyards where he claims he found a car "just like yours."
IF the value he offered is lower than your check of the value with a local dealer or eBay sale of a similar vehicle, go visit the places he says he got his data with a digital camera. You should call first and ask if they got a call from the guy, and then tell them you are coming over to photograph the vehicle.
Chances are the adjuster is a lazy shit and lied. I caught the one who came to my place to look at my son's 190E 2.3-16 lying big time, and the settlement for my price was instant once the supervisor of the clerk was informed - no total and enough cash to fix the car.
If he actually called these guys and they actually have a car "like" yours, a photo to compare the two, and an assessment of the engine, etc. will go a long way toward making your case, unless you don't have one and the adjuster was being fair. My experience is adjusters get something in the way of an incentive to bone you and they fully expect you to buy their macho bluster and supposed expertise. But that was with a Euro 190E 2.3-16. Might not be so likely to lie with a car there are likely quite a few of in local lots. But you never know. That was my experience, for what it is worth, and I hope yours is better.