What does Total Loss mean?
If your vehicle has been deemed as a Total Loss, or sometimes referred to as a “write off”, it simply means that the damage to your car is so great that it would not be safe or economical to repair.
Total Loss also refers to the situation when your car has been stolen and not recovered after 14 days and your claim for the theft of your car is otherwise payable under your policy.
Total Loss within this article only applies to vehicles insured with Comprehensive Insurance against which a claim has been lodged. It does not apply to vehicles a third party insurer has deemed a write off, or a vehicle you have deemed a total loss and disposed of yourself.
How is Total Loss decided?
Several factors are taken into consideration to assess if your car can be repaired or deemed as a Total Loss. Some of these factors include:
- The age and value of the car
- The cost of the repairs
- If the vehicle is salvageable or not
- The safety and roadworthiness of the car following the accident or incident
We also consider the law that applies in your state or territory with relation to what is deemed as a write off.
What happens if my car is written off?
Information about what happens if your car is written off can be found on page 16 of the PDS, under the heading; When your car is a total loss, as well as the following Help Centre articles:
If your car is under finance:
We’ll firstly pay your credit provider what they are entitled to (up to the value of your claim) less our estimate of its salvage value if they are entitled to it, and pay you whatever balance is left.
If you have new for old cover:
We’ll organise the replacement and the policy will continue (more info about that can be found here)
It’s important to note that your policy comes to an end after a total loss payment (if you don’t have New for Old). Although we really hope you insure your next car with us!
If your vehicle ends up being deemed as a Total Loss, the swap car feature via the Bingle Self-Service portal may not be available.
This is because your policy may need to be cancelled by our Total Loss team, which will mean you’ll need to start a new policy if you require insurance on your replacement car.
I pay monthly. Why are the remaining debits deducted from my total loss payout?
When we calculate a Total Loss payment, any unpaid policy premiums for the full 12-month period of cover is deducted from the final claim settlement amount.
Paying a policy annually ensures you have paid for the full 12-month period of cover.
While it is more expensive to pay monthly, this still covers you for the same 12-month period. However, because you haven’t paid the full policy premium amount, any unpaid instalments are deducted from the Total Loss payout or settlement figure.
Regardless of which payment method you’ve selected, no refund on your policy premiums will be due to you if your car has been written off by Bingle because you are essentially “using up” the insurance contract.
Why am I still being debited monthly payments when my car has been assessed as a Total Loss?
If you’ve lodged a Claim and your car has been assessed as a write off, our Total Loss team will organise for your policy to be cancelled.
Any remaining unpaid instalments will be deducted from the final settlement amount.
The direct debit service will continue until the policy has been cancelled and your Total Loss claim is finalised.
So in the interim, if any monthly payments are debited before the policy cancellation occurs, these amounts are still due on the policy, and rest assured they will not be deducted from your Total Loss payout figure.
What does my total loss payout include?
In a nutshell, a total loss payment is calculated as follows:
• It starts with what we determine is your car’s market value; then
• less any applicable excess you haven’t yet paid;
• less any unpaid premiums for the full period of cover;
• less any unused registration costs and CTP insurance; and
• less the amount equal to any applicable Input Tax Credit that you are entitled to.
What happens if my car is deemed a total loss and it's under finance?
If your car is financed, we’ll firstly pay your credit provider what they are entitled to (up to the value of your claim) less our estimate of its salvage value if they are entitled to it, and pay you whatever balance is left