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102 B.U. L. Rev. 1649 (2022)
Inherent Diminished Value in Motor Vehicle Torts

handle is hein.journals/bulr102 and id is 1683 raw text is: 



                             Ross Chapman*

   Motor vehicles lose value after accidents, even when they subsequently are
competently and  completely repaired. Previously damaged  vehicles have a
stigma surrounding them  stemming from a fear that repairs cannot restore a
vehicle to its exact pre-accident condition. The loss in value caused by this
phenomenon   is called inherent diminished value (IDV). Despite widespread
expert recognition of IDV, many vehicle owners are not compensated for this
loss in value when they recover damages in an insurance settlement or a tort
judgment. Even if a vehicle owner knows to request IDV damages, she will face
substantial obstacles: her jurisdiction may limit tort recovery to repair costs
only, her insurer may argue that IDV does not exist, or her burden of proof may
require a costly expert opinion to establish even minor diminution in value.
   This Note argues that IDV is a real and inevitable consequence of motor
vehicle collisions for which plaintiffs must be compensated by defendants and
their insurers to be made whole. This Note starts with an exploration of the tort
and  insurance concepts underlying diminished value claims before surveying
the different ways in which the fifty states fashion their measures of damages to
include or  exclude IDV.  This Note  then queries what problems  must  be
addressed by an IDV  doctrine that compensates but does not overcompensate
plaintiffs and provides judicial and legislative suggestions enacting such a

   * J.D., Boston University School of Law, 2022; B.A., Music, Columbia University, 2018.
I would like to thank Professor Maria O'Brien for advising me on this Note and Professor
Kathryn Zeiler for her additional commentary. I would also like to thank the editors and staff
of the Boston University Law Review for their guidance, especially my Note Development
Editor, Arielle Sigel. Finally, I would like to thank my parents, Sharon and Kevin, and my
fiancee, Daniella, for their unwavering love and support.

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