2023 Author: Eric Donovan | [email protected]. Last modified: 2023-05-21 15:44
A driver can have the repair costs reimbursed after an accident, even if he does not have his vehicle repaired. If he sells his car within six months, he is not entitled to the money according to a BGH ruling.
The Federal Court of Justice (BGH) has limited the right to reimbursement of repair costs for an accident vehicle. It is true that the injured driver can, in principle, demand the estimated repair costs even if he foregoes a repair. If he sells his broken car within six months of an accident, he is not entitled to these costs, which have been estimated by an expert. He could then only demand the money for the replacement, even if the repair costs would have been higher, according to a judgment published on Thursday.
The BGH thus dismissed the lawsuit brought by a driver whose car had remained roadworthy after an accident. An appraiser estimated the repair at around 3,200 euros. The driver waived the repairs, initially continued to drive the car and sold it four months later. The insurance company transferred him 1,600 euros - the difference between replacement costs and residual value. He then sued the insurance company for a further 1,600 euros. (Az: VI ZR 192/05 of May 23, 2006)
The VI. Civil Senate made it clear that the injured party should not earn money from the accident. It is true that an actual repair is not a prerequisite for a claim to the costs of the repair. Because the need for repairs reflects the loss that his assets suffered as a result of the accident. Whether he will use the money for the repair is his decision.
According to the BGH, however, the prerequisite is that he continues to use the car. If he keeps the car for at least six months, then according to the court he shows his "serious interest" in further use. If he sells the car beforehand, he will only get the money for the replacement of an equivalent vehicle, from which the residual value of the accident vehicle will be deducted.