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5 Steps to Take When Your Car is Totaled

5 Steps to Take When Your Car is Totaled

If you've ever been in an accident where your car has been totaled, you know firsthand the stress and overwhelming nature of such an experience. It can leave you feeling uncertain and anxious about what steps to take next. That's why it's crucial to have a clear understanding of the correct course of action to ensure a smooth process.

In this comprehensive guide, we'll walk you through the 5 essential steps you need to take when your car is declared a total loss by your insurance company. We won't just cover the basics of navigating the total loss process and filing insurance claims; we'll delve into the intricacies of vehicle valuation and provide valuable insights on the necessary actions to take after the accident.

Did you know that in the United States alone, over 2.7 million vehicles were deemed totaled in 2019? This staggering statistic highlights the importance of being well-prepared and informed in case you find yourself in this unfortunate situation. So, take a deep breath and rest assured that we're here to guide you every step of the way, ensuring you have the knowledge and confidence to navigate this process successfully.

Ensure Safety and Document the Accident

After experiencing a car accident, it's crucial to prioritize personal safety as the topmost concern. Begin by checking yourself and others involved for any injuries, and if necessary, seek immediate medical attention. Once safety measures have been addressed, it is essential to document the accident scene thoroughly. Take detailed photos from various angles and make notes about the circumstances. These records will play a vital role in supporting insurance claims and expediting the total loss process.

In addition to documenting the accident scene, it is crucial to communicate with any other parties involved. Exchange contact and insurance information to ensure a smooth post-accident procedure. Reporting the accident to the police is also highly recommended. This step not only helps in obtaining a copy of the accident report but can also assist in determining the valuation of the vehicles involved.

In the unfortunate event that your car is considered totaled, understanding the total loss process and navigating insurance claims can be overwhelming. However, taking proactive steps early on can simplify the process. Remember, safety should always be the primary concern, and ensuring that all necessary information is recorded will contribute to a smoother post-accident experience overall.

Contact Your Insurance Company

If you've been involved in a car accident and find yourself in a situation where your vehicle is deemed totaled, it is crucial to promptly reach out to your insurance company. Understanding the insurance claims process and the total loss process can seem overwhelming at first, but it is essential to grasp the necessary steps to take after the accident.

As someone who has recently experienced a car accident, your primary objective is to recover and resume your normal driving routine as soon as possible. By contacting your insurance provider, you can effectively work towards achieving this goal. When communicating with your insurance company, it is advisable to be prepared to provide them with as much detailed information as possible regarding the accident and the resulting damages. This will greatly facilitate discussions relating to the timeline for processing the insurance claim.

Additionally, it is important to have a good understanding of the vehicle valuation process to ensure that you receive a fair price for your totaled vehicle. If you feel overwhelmed by the post-accident procedures, do not hesitate to seek assistance from your insurance company. With LUNA as your trusted companion, you can navigate through this process with confidence, knowing that you are well-informed and prepared.

 Vehicle Assessment and Dealing with the Insurance Claim

After an unexpected accident, dealing with insurance claims and navigating through the total loss process can feel overwhelming and stressful. However, it is crucial to maintain open communication and cooperation with the insurance company throughout this process. One key aspect is providing accurate and detailed information about the extent of the damage to your vehicle.

By doing so, you can ensure a fair and accurate assessment by the insurance company. If you're concerned about understanding the valuation process or negotiating the settlement offer, LUNA can provide expert guidance. Their cutting-edge app and licensed professionals offer round-the-clock support, hassle-free transitions, and transparency throughout the claims process, ensuring you get proper coverage and fair pricing. In fact, using LUNA could save you an average of $597/year on auto insurance. So, after an accident, don't go through the post-accident steps alone; let LUNA be your partner and help you navigate the process from start to finish.

Understanding how a "car totaled" or total loss determination is made is also important. In general, if the cost of repairing the vehicle exceeds its market value or surpasses the "total loss threshold" set by the state, it will be deemed a total loss. This means that the insurance company may offer compensation based on the market value of the car rather than covering the repair costs.

Having this knowledge and awareness is crucial because it can significantly impact the amount of compensation you receive. It's important to be proactive in understanding the process, asking questions, and seeking clarification if needed. This way, you can navigate the insurance claims process with confidence and ensure that you receive fair compensation for your loss.

Plan Your Next Steps After Settlement

After settling an insurance claim due to a totaled car, there are several crucial steps that need to be taken to ensure a smooth transition. The first decision that needs to be made is whether to accept the insurance payout or contest the valuation. This choice can be influenced by factors such as the extent of the damage, the market value of the car, and personal considerations. Taking the insurance payout may offer a quick resolution, but contesting the valuation could potentially result in a higher payout. Once the decision regarding the insurance payout is made, the next step is to explore options for replacing the vehicle. This involves considering various factors such as your specific needs, budget, and preferences. Researching different makes and models, comparing prices, and test-driving potential replacements can help you make an informed decision. Additionally, considering factors like fuel efficiency, safety features, and maintenance costs can contribute to finding a vehicle that best suits your requirements.

In addition to finding a suitable replacement vehicle, it is crucial to address any ongoing financial considerations that may arise from the loss of your car. This could include outstanding car loans, lease payments, or other financial obligations associated with the vehicle. Taking the time to review your financial situation and make necessary adjustments will help ensure a smooth transition and prevent any potential financial strain.

By following these steps and considering all the necessary details, you can navigate the process of settling an insurance claim and find a suitable solution that meets your needs and preferences. LUNA can help provide valuable advice in selecting a new vehicle and adjusting your insurance plan accordingly. Utilize LUNA's services for its experience, expertise, and personalized services to help make your post-accident steps hassle-free. With LUNA, you can expect excellent efficiency, transparency, and expert access to licensed professionals. You can also take advantage of LUNA's features like 24/7 agent availability, pre-renewal automatic shopping, and convenient policy management, all in the app. Trust LUNA, a service-tech first insurance brokerage, to offer the best rates and proper coverage to simplify the switch between insurance providers and handle policy cancellations with ease.


Dealing with the aftermath of a totaled car can be a daunting task, but with a little guidance, it can be made easier. The first and foremost step is to ensure your safety and document the accident. Once these vital steps have been taken, it is crucial to contact your insurance company as soon as possible. Staying informed and proactive throughout the total loss process is essential to ensure a smooth journey. If you feel overwhelmed, don't worry, you are not alone! Services like LUNA are available to provide professional assistance. The most critical part of the total loss process is vehicle assessment and dealing with the insurance claim. Lastly, plan your next steps after settlement. LUNA has helped many people through this challenging process and is here to help you navigate this process in the best possible way.