Some stolen cars are recovered after their owners have been compensated by their car insurance companies. If this happens to you, know that you should handle the situation differently from how you would handle a recovery made before the insurance claim is paid out. Here are some ways of handling the situation:
Report the Recovery
The first thing you should do is to report the recovery to your auto insurance company. This is because once you have been compensated for your lost car, the car belongs to the insurance company should it be recovered. In fact, most insurance companies include this under their terms and conditions and will accuse you of fraud if you recover your car but fail to inform them. Such accusations may jeopardize your current policy and future relations with car insurance companies.
Wait for Recovery
You have done your part once you have made the report it is up to the insurance company to organize for the collection of the car. the insurance company will probably send a representative to handle the collection; liaise with them (for example by scheduling the collection when you are available) for the collection. If the car is recovered in a damaged state, then the insurance company may deem it north worth their collection efforts and leave it to you.
Ask About Buyback
Depending on your state's insurance laws and your insurance carrier's policies, you may be able to buy back the car. This will also be determined by whether the company is willing to deal with you directly or you have to go to the salvage yard and compete for the car with other buyers. This may be a good option for you if you have a sentimental attachment to the car, for example, if it was a gift from a loved one.
Ask About Sentimental Items
If your car is recovered, it may be recovered together with other personal items that might have been in the car when it was stolen. Examples include toys for your kids, documents or personal gifts. Whether these items are returned to you depends on whether you made a claim for them or not. Anything that you have been compensated for belongs to the insurance company. This is why insurance companies don't usually compensate for items of sentimental value. Even if you have been compensated for the same, you may be able to negotiate for a return of these items with your insurance company.