Georgia auto property damage diminution of value claims
Georgia automobile insurance companies have been required since 2001 to "include an evaluation of diminution in value in its standard assessment of damages, just as it evaluates other elements of damage, and to adopt a suitable methodology for doing so." State Farm Mut. Auto. Ins. Co. v. Mabry, 274 Ga. 498, 556 S.E.2d 114 (2001).
In the past year or so a number of insurers have represented to claimants that they were using a formula approved by the Insurance Commission that set a definitive amount for valuation of diminution of value. That was incorrect.
Today the Insurance Commissioner is issuing a directive to insurance companies to "cease using any language which implies the Department has endorsed a particualr formula or method to determine diminution of value."
Instead, the Commissioner is informing insurance companies:
Effective immediately, any insurer disseminating information and/or appraisals to their insureds shall cease using any language which implies the Department has endorsed a particular formula or method to determine diminution of value. Specifically, any insurer disseminating information and/or appraisals to their insureds shall cease using any language which implies that the Mabry decision or any other requirement of the Department supports the proposition that the diminished value result obtained by a carrier’s use of a particular formula or method constitutes the definitive determination of the carrier’s liability to its insured. Any insurer not complying with this Directive will be subject to appropriate disciplinary action.