Dear Terry,

My daughter’s car was struck by another vehicle while stopped at a red light. The insurance company wants to total her car. It can be fixed. Six days before the accident, she had a custom paint job, new tires and 20-inch custom wheels at a cost of $4,000. The insurance company refuses to take the add-ons into account when appraising the car. How can we fight this?

— Deb

Dear Deb,

Have an independent appraiser look at the car and submit that appraisal report to the insurance company. There’s a procedure for arbitration when dealing with an insurance settlement, which is what this is. You may need to hire an attorney, but in this case, it might be worth it.

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