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What is insurance write-off? Categories A, B, S, and N Explained – Adrian Flux


From how your car is valued to contesting valuations, our guide to insurance depreciation explains everything you need to know if your car is damaged beyond repair. doing.

What is insurance write-off?

Write-off is a term used by insurance companies to describe when a vehicle is damaged to the extent that it either:

  • Unable to drive safely even after repair
  • It makes no economic sense to repair

You may also hear amortization called “gross loss”.

There are four categories of depreciation, defined by the level of damage suffered by the car. The category your car is in determines if it can be sold or must be scrapped.

Deductions can be made against your own policy or against another driver. third party insurance And the other driver was at fault.

How do insurance companies determine if a car is depreciable?

insurance depreciation
If your car has been in an accident or suffered significant damage (fire, vandalism, flooding, etc.), the insurance company will first determine if the car can be repaired to a safe standard. , depreciation is declared.

If repairs are possible, the insurance company evaluates the type of damage suffered and the repair-to-value ratio. This means comparing estimated repair costs to the car’s value. In most cases, a car is considered write-off if repairs cost at least 50% to 60% of the car’s value, but this varies by insurance company.

For example, let’s say you have a car worth £6,500 and it’s been damaged in a crash. Your insurance company uses his 55% repair-to-value ratio. This means they will classify your car as written off if the repair costs more than £3,575.

Please note that insurance companies base their calculations on quotes from official body repair companies using replacement parts purchased directly from the manufacturer. This means that even minor damage to you can result in insurance deductibles.

What are insurance depreciation categories?

insurance depreciation
There are four main categories of insurance deductibles, based on the degree of damage suffered.

Category A

Ah Category A amortization It means your car will never be safe to drive again and will have to be crushed.

Category B

Ah Cat B. Also, you won’t be able to drive safely on the road again. It must be scrapped, but some parts may be salvaged.

Category S

Cat S cars have suffered structural damage such as collapsed rumple zones (front or rear of car), broken suspension, bent chassis, etc., but can be salvaged.

Category N

A Category N vehicle is one that has suffered extensive non-structural damage. This covers cosmetic damage as well as damage to the brakes, steering wheel, entertainment system or other parts of the car.

What happens if I have my Cat S or Cat N car serviced?

If your vehicle is Cat S and Cat N, this is classified as depreciation until it is professionally repaired and re-registered with the DVLA (Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency). After this you will receive an updated logbook (V5C registration certificate). This logbook is marked with an ‘S’ for ‘Reclaimed’. This is so new buyers know the car has been written off once.

Old category: Category C, Category D

Upset man with crashed car in background

Cat S and Cat N were introduced on October 1, 2017, replacing Cat C and Cat D. Cars written off after this date will be in the new category, but there are still many Cat C and Cat D cars available on the used market. .

Category C was the classification given to vehicles whose repair costs would have exceeded the car’s value. At least 100% repair-to-value ratio. The same is true for Category D cars, but if the repair-to-value ratio is higher than the insurance company’s repair threshold.

Can I keep my car if depreciation is declared?

If your insurance company classifies your car as write-off, they will give you a cash payment equivalent to the value of the car and then sell or scrap the car. but then sell the car back. This is only possible for category S or category N depreciation.

For Cat S, Send logbook (V5C) to apply for new insurance with your insurance company. V62 typeYou don’t have to do this for Category N, but you must notify the DVLA that your vehicle is on write off regardless of which category it belongs to.

Can I insure a car that has been written off?

insurance depreciation
can guarantee Cat S Also Category N amortization If purchased from an insurance company (see above), and not a Cat A or Cat B vehicle.you can too Insure Cat C or Cat D If you purchased a used vehicle or own an older vehicle that was previously declared depreciated.

Not all insurance companies offer cover for previously written off cars, so it’s best to find a professional insurance company like Adrian Flux.

Your insurance company may require proof of any repairs you have had on your vehicle. If you buy a car that has been written off used, obtain a complete service and repair history. In some cases, the insurance company may require an independent technician’s report to ensure that the repair was performed safely.

What if I disagree with the decision to write off the car?

If you don’t believe your car is write-off, you can claim this with your insurance company – but only for Cat S or Cat N.:

  • They think they should pay more cash.
  • They don’t think the repair-to-value ratio is as high as the insurance company claims (so the car may not be depreciable).

Both of these are related to the value of the car. The insurance company must offer a cash payment that allows you to purchase the same car that has been written off (in pre-depreciation condition).

man talking on the phone

If you wish to appeal the decision, you should notify your insurance company as soon as possible. The next step is to do research so you can prove the value of your car to your insurance company. Try one or more of the following:

  • buy Parker Use our gas station guide to find out how much your car is worth, or have a mechanic examine your car with Glass’ car guide. These are used as standards across the industry.
  • Look for sales ads in your local paper. If you find multiple ads for the same make, model, year, and condition of your car selling for a higher price, you can use these as evidence.
  • You can also get a detailed copy of a car like yours by looking at the vestibules of cars for sale from dealers.

Once you have gathered evidence, send this to your insurance company or broker and try to negotiate a higher cash payment or a lower repair-to-value ratio. However, you may have to pay for the privilege of doing this, so you should only do this if you have a strong feeling that you can achieve the results you want. Also note that it is final. There’s a good chance that an appraiser will rate your car for less than the insurance company you originally offered it to.

you also have the right to contact them financial ombudsman However, always try to resolve the issue directly before performing this “last resort” step.

What if the amortization valuation does not cover my car financing?

Woman on the phone after a car accident
When you buy a car with a loan, you pay interest on more than the value of the car. Unfortunately, write-offs don’t change the amount owed to the finance company, so it’s possible that your cash payment will be less than your outstanding balance. That said, in some cases, for example, if you have owned your car for a long time and have mostly paid off the balance, your insurance company may pay off your loan directly, or your financier may settle your debt. Talk to both and ask for advice.

It’s also worth checking if you have purchased Guaranteed Asset Protection Insurance (GAP). Total loss protection, when you bought a car or when you last renewed your insurance. GAP insurance covers the difference between amortized cash payments and the value of your car when purchased new.

If you want to learn more about buying Cat C and Cat D cars, check out these blogs: Pros and Cons of Purchasing Earlier Amortization.

get written off car insurance

If your car was previously written off, we can help. As a professional insurance broker, we are able to provide insurance for written off vehicles that others cannot. request a callback at a time that suits you.



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