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Car side-swiped and insurance issues
Old 12-29-2015, 08:52 PM   #1
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Car side-swiped and insurance issues

On Dec. 23, my S.O.'s car was side-swiped. Nobody was injured. The other driver admits to causing the damage. The S.O. and the Other Driver exchanged insurance info, etc. He said he'd preferred to pay out of pocket. We agreed and said we would get an estimate. We called him yesterday (Monday) about the estimate we received ($900 for anybody else, but for us $800). The Other Driver said he'd call us back tomorrow afternoon, (Tuesday Dec 29) as he was trying to get the money together. He hasn't called. We also got another estimate today at a much bigger place, with insurance paying for it. The estimate was $1900 (tops). But, that includes a bunch of work that maybe we don't need.

Anyhow, if the Other Driver doesn't come through, do we call our insurance company with the information or do we call his insurance company with the information?


Any ideas or suggestions about the situation we be welcomed
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Old 12-29-2015, 08:58 PM   #2
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I'd go through the insurance company. If the guy can't get $800 bucks together you'll end up hearing every excuse and sad tale in the book.
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Old 12-29-2015, 09:08 PM   #3
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Insurance company - from the get go. The "I'll pay you directly" promises are unnecessary gambles and frequent disappointments.
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Old 12-29-2015, 09:10 PM   #4
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I don't get the "includes a bunch of work that maybe we don't need" part. He (or his insurer) should be repairing the car to what it was before the accident.

If he doesn't call back and make good, then call SO's insurer and report the accident and relay the info on Other Driver and his insurer.

Like jfn, I would be skeptical. Many moons ago someone rear ended me and was going to pay me $x per week until the damages were paid ... I think I got two payments and then never heard from him again.
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Old 12-29-2015, 09:23 PM   #5
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Unless was impossible, I would have called the police to get an official report at the scene of the accident. To protect yourself if the guy's "memory" of what happened, well, suddenly changes.
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Old 12-29-2015, 11:16 PM   #6
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You might want to get another estimate, as those 2 are far apart.
You don't want to take $800 and find out the bill is $1200.

If he does not call, then call your SO insurance company give them the info, and let them do their job, for all you know the guy is uninsured (lucky you have uninsured coverage? )

What a pain to go through.
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Old 12-30-2015, 12:41 AM   #7
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I am in the 'call the other person's insurance' group (if there is one)....


I would not waste any of my time with him if he is unwilling to cough up the money right now....

A police report is always a good thing to have if you are not at fault...
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Old 12-30-2015, 02:34 AM   #8
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This is like a case of "I am going to be late with the rent this month".

If you do not file, you will not get anything. Odds are, he doesn't have any insurance...
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Old 12-30-2015, 07:41 AM   #9
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State laws vary, but having had a recent substantial motor vehicle loss due to an accident my unequivocal answer would be to go though SO's insurance. From my experience, it will get you nowhere to go through the other driver's insurance company. They will be even more slippery than the other driver, as that is simply how they handle business.
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Old 12-30-2015, 08:00 AM   #10
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Recently I was forced into a utility pole by a bus coming out of a dealership. He was making a left hand turn into the right lane and didn't see me coming up the street. Anyway - they wanted to handle it all without insurance involvement. State Farm strongly advised us to not go that route. SF got our car fixed, rental, etc. Turned out that the bus company paid SF and us (our deductibles) directly and did not file a claim with their insurance (which they did have). So, even though insurance company is involved - the other person can pay your insurance company. I would definitely not take that other party at their "word" that they will cover your expenses.
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Old 12-30-2015, 08:17 AM   #11
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The starting point is to call the other driver's insurance. If they do not perform, THEN you call your insurance. If you call your own insurance first it will be a claim on your policy (regardless of fault) and will get you a rate increase. Best to keep your insurance out of it if you can.
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Old 12-30-2015, 08:23 AM   #12
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Any witnesses that were not involved in the accident? Many years ago some guy ran a red light and hit my car in the middle of an intersection. (Both cars had front end damage) He apologized and admitted fault so, we exchange info and we went on our ways. When we contacted his insurance company the next day, we were told he wasn't at fault. Anyway, we didn't have any other witnesses, pictures, etc. We called our insurance company and they just paid our claim, less the deductible of course.

I have an in car video camera these days.
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Old 12-30-2015, 08:29 AM   #13
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I'd call YOUR insurance company.....they should handle everything.....their adjusters get special rates, work with the other individuals insurance company......if you don't get the cash you need today.......call your insurance immediately......and, if you're not happy with the body shop's job......you won't have your insurance company fighting on your behalf....if it's the others fault your rate will not go up.....
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Old 12-30-2015, 08:30 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by soupcxan View Post
The starting point is to call the other driver's insurance. If they do not perform, THEN you call your insurance. If you call your own insurance first it will be a claim on your policy (regardless of fault) and will get you a rate increase. Best to keep your insurance out of it if you can.
I agree.
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Old 12-30-2015, 09:29 AM   #15
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If you call your own insurance first it will be a claim on your policy (regardless of fault) and will get you a rate increase.
That can't be true. Got a cite for that?
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Old 12-30-2015, 09:53 AM   #16
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I would recommend calling the other guy's insurance company and filing a claim. If you call your company, you will be out your deductible and won't get that back until your company subrogates against his company, which could take months to complete. If your deductible is $500, then you are out a good bit of the total cost of the repairs.

I had a guy rear-end me when I was a poor, starving college student and he promised to pay and didn't want me to call the police. I protected myself and called anyway. He had no insurance and it took three years before he finally paid my insurance company after they had filed suit against him.

If his company drags their feet you can still go to yours to get the damage repaired and let them go after him. Your insurance rates may not change after a not at fault accident, but it will show up in your claims history with the company and you could lose your "claim free" discount if they offer one.

I've worked for insurance companies for almost thirty-five years, so have dealt with this from all angles. Being a small fender bender with no medical, his company should be happy to fix your car for such a small amount of money. They may ask you to take it to one of their "approved shops" for an estimate since they trust those shops to treat them fairly and not gouge them with bogus repairs.
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Old 12-30-2015, 12:57 PM   #17
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Thanks for the helpful replies.

Here is where we are so far:
S.O. called our insurance company (GEICO) this morning (Wed.) and started a claim with them. However, the rep. suggested that we might consider going through the Other Driver's insurance co. (Farmers) because of the $500 deductible situation. We agreed to go that route and the rep. is calling Farmers to initiate our claim with them. Of course, we are proceeding at the moment as if the Other Driver actually has insurance.

++++
Whoa. Turns out the GEICO just called Farmers and they can't "locate" the Other Driver's insurance policy. GEICO will follow up on this a bit more.

Whoops. GEICO is calling again.
Whoa (again). GEICO called back and Other Driver's Farmer policy has been located. Farmers will be calling S.O. on Monday or Tuesday.
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Old 12-30-2015, 01:46 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by redduck View Post
Thanks for the helpful replies.

Here is where we are so far:
S.O. called our insurance company (GEICO) this morning (Wed.) and started a claim with them. However, the rep. suggested that we might consider going through the Other Driver's insurance co. (Farmers) because of the $500 deductible situation. We agreed to go that route and the rep. is calling Farmers to initiate our claim with them. Of course, we are proceeding at the moment as if the Other Driver actually has insurance.

++++
Whoa. Turns out the GEICO just called Farmers and they can't "locate" the Other Driver's insurance policy. GEICO will follow up on this a bit more.

Whoops. GEICO is calling again.
Whoa (again). GEICO called back and Other Driver's Farmer policy has been located. Farmers will be calling S.O. on Monday or Tuesday.
You may have gotten lucky here. Many times, these guys don't have insurance at all and give you expired policy info (or fake). Now just hope he didn't tell his insurance company that YOU sideswiped HIM.
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Old 12-30-2015, 03:05 PM   #19
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I'd go through the insurance company. If the guy can't get $800 bucks together you'll end up hearing every excuse and sad tale in the book.
Exactly. If he can't pay it now he won't by next week either. Unless perhaps you have a large cousin named "Guido"....
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Old 12-30-2015, 03:37 PM   #20
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That can't be true. Got a cite for that?
Source was my insurance agent when I was rear ended by another driver who had insurance. I went through the at fault driver's insurance without a hitch. Also, if you go through your own insurance, you are subject to your deductible. If you go through the other insurance, you have no deductible to pay.

Insurance companies ding you if they pay a claim for you, it's as simple as that. They don't care that it wasn't your fault.
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