Why is my car a write off?


Your car will be deemed a 'write off' by an insurance company if it is considered to be beyond economic repair, in other words the cost of repairing it would be more than the insured value of the car.

When considering repair costs they may take into account not only parts and labour but possibly also costs for a hire car while your vehicle is off the road. Even though the damage may seem minor the replacement parts are not usually the major cost, it could be the labour charges that often push the costs over uneconomical threshold.

When a vehicle is written off or considered to be a total loss by an insurer it will be then be referred to as 'salvage'. It will then be categorised in the following way:-

  • Category A. This vehicle has been inspected by an appropriately qualified person, declared unsuitable or beyond repair and has been identified to be crushed in its entirety. This vehicle is deemed not suitable to be repaired. Must be crushed without any parts being removed. This vehicle will be classed as waste.

  • Category B.This vehicle has been inspected by an appropriately qualified person and declared unsuitable or beyond repair. The vehicle is deemed not suitable to be repaired. Usable parts can be recycled. This vehicle will be classed as waste

  • Category S. This vehicle has been inspected by an appropriately qualified person and declared suitable for repair. Repairable vehicle which has sustained damage to any part of the structural frame or chassis and the insurer/ self-insured owner has decided not to repair the vehicle.

  • Category N. This vehicle has been inspected by an appropriately qualified person and declared suitable for repair.

    Repairable vehicle which has not sustained damage to the structural frame or chassis and the insurer/ self-insured owner has decided not to repair the vehicle.

    While the damage to the vehicle has been noted as non-structural, there may still be some safety critical items that require replacement e.g. steering and suspension parts.


Vehicle Identity Checks were introduced to help prevent criminals from using the identities of written off vehicles to disguise those of stolen vehicles. If a car is declared a total loss by an insurer, they will notify the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency who will then put what is known as a 'VIC' marker on the vehicles record. This marker cannot be removed until the vehicle has been inspected.

Removal of the VIC marker does not necessarily mean the vehicle is safe to drive on the road however, the owner will need to get a separate inspection in order to do this.

If you have had a car accident that was not your fault, please telephone Car Call on 02392 484 244 , and one of our experienced claims advisors will be happy to assist you.


No need to claim on your insurance

Anyone who has been involved in a road accident has the right to choose who repairs their vehicle. If you were responsible for the accident you were involved in, the company that insures your vehicle would normally deal with your accident claim.

However if you were not at-fault for the accident, you can choose to either claim on your own insurance policy or make a claim independently of your insurer. To find out more call 02392 484 244 and we will be happy to help.

We and our partners help thousands of people make independent accident claims. Our service enables motorists to get the help and assistance they need to resolve their accident related issues, with the costs being recovered directly from the at-fault driver on your behalf.

No excess to pay

Unfortunately even if an accident was not your fault, your insurer will almost certainly require you to pay your excess before any repair is started on your car.

This money should of course be recovered by an insurer at a later date, but with our service - you do not have to pay it at all.

By using our independent claims service, you are not making a claim on your insurance policy and so you will have no excess to pay.

Receive a like-for-like replacement hire vehicle

Not all insurance policies will include a replacement hire-car for you to use if yours is damaged and unroadworthy. In fact it is typically an 'optional extra' on your policy.

Other policies may offer a 'courtesy car' but this is often just a 'basic' saloon or hatchback which may not be suitable for your needs.

Car Call and its partners will provide a like-for-like replacement vehicle as part of our service. This means we will endeavour to supply a hire-vehicle that similar to your own in terms of its type, make and engine size.

So whether you drive a small hatchback or a prestige sports car, we will look to provide a similar hire-vehicle that suits your needs.

Manufacturer approved vehicle repairs

If you have been involved in a car accident, the last thing you want to have to worry about is the quality of the repairs to your car. We have a UK wide network of partner approved Accident Repair Centres available to all of our customers.

Many of our accident repair centres are have manufacturer approvals for specific brands, so if you require a manufacturer approved repair centre, simply tell your personal claim handler and they will ensure your vehicle goes to an approved repairer.

Want you vehicle repaired by a specific garage? No problem, we can alternatively use a repairer that you specify.

Legal Assistance

Our partner solicitors provide legal assistance as part of our service. They specialise in motor claims related issues, so you can be assured of the best possible advice and assistance.

They issues they can assist you with include:

  • Recovery of the cost of the replacement hire-vehicle
  • Recovery of the cost of uplifting your damaged vehicle
  • Recovery of all repair costs
  • Recovery of the cost of damaged of personal items
  • Seeking financial compensation for an injury