Car Is Totaled: Learn About The Total Loss Process

GEICO's Total Loss Process

Not sure about your next step? Want to see where you are in the process? You can send a message to your assigned Auto Damage Adjuster and/or find their phone number in our Claims Center.

What You Can Expect From The Total Loss Process

Is the vehicle owned, financed, or leased?

Time To Payment

The steps above should give you a general idea of the total loss process. Please note that your case may differ.

Will GEICO pay for your rental? How long can you keep it?

GEICO will pay for a rental if your vehicle isn't drivable and you have rental reimbursement coverage or other applicable coverage. You can keep the rental for 3 days after GEICO informs you that your vehicle is a total loss. The total number of authorized rental days depends on your circumstances.

Want to know where you are in the total loss process?

View My Claim

Total Loss Questions

  • What exactly does "total loss" mean?

    A vehicle is a total loss (or totaled) if any of the following apply:

    • The vehicle cannot be safely repaired
    • Repairs would cost more than the vehicle's estimated value
    • The damage meets your state's total loss guidelines
  • How does GEICO find the actual cash value of your vehicle?

    These factors determine your vehicle's actual cash value:

    • Your vehicle's mileage
    • Features, add-ons, and modifications
    • Any damage before the claim incident
    • Recent sales prices of similar vehicles in your area
  • Can you choose to keep your totaled car?

    That depends on the state where you live. Ask your assigned adjuster about your state's rules for total loss vehicles. We'll adjust your settlement amount if you decide to keep your totaled car.

  • What should you do if you think your car might be a total loss?

    • Take your personal belongings out of the car
    • If you own your car, find your vehicle title (the paperwork that proves you're the owner)
    • If you're making payments on your car or have a lease, look up contact information for your finance or lease company

    Please note that your vehicle is not officially a total loss until your adjuster confirms it after inspection.

  • Who receives the settlement payment?

    That depends on whether the vehicle is owned, financed, or leased.

    • If you own the vehicle, we'll pay you directly
    • If you're making payments to a finance company that's listed on your policy or your title:
      • We'll pay the finance company first
      • If the settlement amount is more than what you owe the finance company, you'll receive the rest (if you're the titled owner)
      • If the settlement amount is less than what you owe, you'll be responsible for paying the balance of your loan*
    • If you have a lease, we'll pay the lease company directly

    *If you have gap insurance, it may cover the balance of your loan.

  • Should you remove your totaled vehicle from your insurance policy?

    Yes, but please wait to remove the vehicle until:

    • You return your rental vehicle
    • The title or lease of your vehicle is no longer in your name

    When you're ready, you can remove the vehicle online in our Policyholder Service Center.

This material is intended for general information only. It does not expand coverage beyond the policy contract. Please refer to your policy contract for any specific information or questions on applicability of coverage.

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