Updated 29-11-2021 - Nicki Saunders

If you have recently been in an accident, or if your car has sustained some damage from mother nature, there’s a possibility that your car might be written off. There are several different categories that a damaged car can fall into, and this is a decision that will be made by your insurance company, alongside their affiliated mechanics. 

The insurance company will advise you what category your vehicle falls under, and then advise how much they will pay you. If your car is a complete write off (categories A & B), the company should pay you the current value of the vehicle. If the car is repairable, but the cost of the repairs outweigh the current value of the car (category C), you will be paid out this value, and not get the car back. If however, the damage is repairable and the costs won’t outweigh the value of the car, the insurance company will cover the costs of the repairs. Each insurance company have specific mechanics and panel beaters that they are affiliated with, and they will be able to advise you where to take your car. 

car write off

Depending on the extent of the damage, the body work can be easily repaired, and it’s a classic case of judging a book by it’s cover. The MOT may have failed for various reasons, and a quick fix of some new tyres may be covering the damage sustained to other parts of the vehicle, due to how it has been running. The VIN number may not match the vehicle, which could indicate that the car you are considering making your own, has actually been stolen. It may have even been painted a completely different color, without the DVLA being informed, which is going to cause you issues in the long run. A car history check will give you all of this vital information in one place, and can save you a lot of headaches. 

By doing a simple car history check, you are potentially saving yourself an incredible amount of money, and protecting yourself and your loved ones by keeping them safe. So as exciting as it may be, do yourself a favour and take the time to do a proper background check before investing your hard earned money. All you need is the vehicle registration number, it’s that easy!

car write off

What are the categories?

There are six different categories that the cars can fall under. 

  • Category A: Category A is literally the worst case scenario. This is when the car is a complete write off, and has such severe damage to the vehicle, that it is not even worth salvaging. You cannot even sell any parts from a vehicle in this category, and the only future the car has, is total destruction. This is usually given to vehicles that have been caused by fire damage or a significantly serious accident. 
  • Category B: Category B is the next level of most serious damage to the vehicle, as it is only worth being stripped for parts. The car is not allowed to be driven again, and it’s only purpose now is providing undamaged pieces of the vehicle.
  • Category C: Category C has significant damage to the car, but it is repairable. However, the costs of repairing the damages that have been sustained to the vehicle will potentially cost more than the vehicle itself.
  • Category D: Category D is very similar to Category C, but the damages were less significant, so potentially an easier and cheaper fix.
  • Category S: Category S cars have technically been written off, but are potentially salvageable, because they’re structurally damaged, but repairable. The kind of damage of this category will be along the lines of suspension or chassis. 
  • Category N: Category N vehicles are the ones that have had non-structural damage such as things to the bumper, roof panel, engine, seats etc.