3:00am + loud noise = Bad morning! Adjusters help!

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 11, 2009 9:37 pm   Post subject: 3:00am + loud noise = Bad morning! Adjusters help!  

I had my car ran into the other morning by a guy that fell asleep. He doesn't have insurance so I have to claim it on my insurance under uninsured motorists property damage. The car is a 07 Elantra and it was hit in the front driver's side. The car was struck and moved up the curb and then slid/rolled through the yard. The estimate is $6,182 for body damage and suspension repairs. There is no where in there a mention to the damage to the transmission that could have possibly occurred. The pillar that the door is mounted to is mangled and twisted. Also my airbags did not deploy.



From my understanding, the car is supposed to be able to be fixed to as it was prior to the accident. IMO, there is no way to get it that way without replacing the transmission and the frame will never be the same. How are they not totaling my car? They just come up with an arbitrary value for the car to meet this threshold? The NADA value of my car is $10,300. Which these cars are just not selling for that.



The accident was in South Carolina. So would I be entitled to a diminished value claim if the car is repaired? They came up with the estimate with the door, front fender, and front bumper removed. If there is any more damage found, and it eclipses the so important threshold, will they just stop fixing it and make the car a total loss?



Can someone please shed some light onto this, I'm at a loss. I've never had to use my insurance before out of my 8 years of driving and now that I need to use it, I get the shaft.


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therod0120
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 12, 2009 12:19 pm   Post subject:   

I signed up, I didn't realize that it would post me as a guest. I'm hoping someone will be able to help me out!

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PostPosted: Sun Jul 12, 2009 12:54 pm   Post subject:   

Good morning therod0120



What a way to wake up...if any consolation to you...I've had it happen too, only the idiot knocked our parked truck into our parked car! And they too (of course Rolling Eyes ) were uninsured as well...geeze it was tough to pay two deductible then...(been about 25 years ago)..



Anyway...

Quote:
There is no where in there a mention to the damage to the transmission that could have possibly occurred
No adjuster can write damage that 'might' be there...because it just as easily 'might not' as well..so they cannot write 'what if' damage...After it's in the shop and torn down, if there is previously unaddressed damage they will add this as a supplement.
Quote:
The pillar that the door is mounted to is mangled and twisted
Is this damage on the estimate?
Quote:
Also my airbags did not deploy
I wouldn't expect them to deploy in this accident.

Quote:
IMO, there is no way to get it that way without replacing the transmission and the frame will never be the same
Well now honey wait a second...you don't know if there IS damage to the tranny..this vehicle is a unibody, so there is no separate frame to it. They will replace whatever sections need to be replaced. Without seeing the vehicle and/or estimate it's hard to say what parts require replacing or can be repaired..

Quote:
How are they not totaling my car?
Apparently at this juncture, it's more economical to repair it rather than total it...
Quote:
They just come up with an arbitrary value for the car to meet this threshold?
No, nothing arbitrary about it...the car is worth 'x' amount...the salvage is worth 'x' amount, subtract the salvage value from the ACV (actual cash value) this is how much they can spend to fix the car...typcially Elantra's salvage values are squat to be frank, and I own one so I know Wink Some states also have a 'percentage' total loss on the books, that is if the repair cost is 70-80% of the vehicles ACV it's a manditory total. I don't know if there is a manditory percent total loss law on the books or not for SC I'll see if I can find out...
Quote:
The NADA value of my car is $10,300. Which these cars are just not selling for that.
You surely aren't mad that they say your vehicle is worth more than you think is is right? Wink
Quote:
The accident was in South Carolina.
Is that also the state the vehicle is registered in?
Quote:
So would I be entitled to a diminished value claim if the car is repaired?
I don't know if SC allows first party DV or not, I'll try and do some checking to find out..
Quote:
They came up with the estimate with the door, front fender, and front bumper removed.
Good they should've been able to see everything then..I assume it was also on a hoast? There is likely undercarriage damage as well
Quote:
...If there is any more damage found, and it eclipses the so important threshold, will they just stop fixing it and make the car a total loss?
It depends on how deep they are into the repair...What I would do is insist (if possible, it not always is) that the suspension and steering damage be addressed first, and get the vehicle to the alignment rack to see if any additional damage can be found..also once it's driveable, they can check the tranny..
Quote:
Can someone please shed some light onto this, I'm at a loss. I've never had to use my insurance before out of my 8 years of driving and now that I need to use it, I get the shaft.
Honey, I don't understand how you think you're getting the shaft? Just because the carrier isn't doing exactly what you want them to do? Do you have a lein on this vehicle? If so what is the pay off? Do you have GAP coverage? Is the vehicle under repair now? What is the threshold to total?


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 12, 2009 1:04 pm   Post subject:   

Ok, found it...



Quote:
In South Carolina, a vehicle can be declared a total loss if the cost of repair, including parts and labor is 75% or more of the vehicle's market value.


So if the insurance company determined that your vehicles ACV is 10,300 that means it totals when the cost of repair is $7725.00



Re: First party DV in SC



Quote:
However, in 2003, state supreme courts in South Carolina, Massachusetts, and Texas ruled that personal auto policies do not obligate insurers to compensate insureds for diminution of value when their vehicles are fully and adequately repaired (Schulmeyer v. State Farm Fire & Cas. , 579 S. E. 2d 132 (SC 2003); Given v. Commerce Ins. , 796 N. E. 2d 1275 (Mass 2003); and American Manufacturers Mutual Ins. V. Schaefer, 124 S. W. 3d 154 (Tex 2003).
Quote:
South Carolina Supreme Court Issues Decision in Diminished Value Case Denying Recovery for Diminution in ValueOn March 24, 2003, the South Carolina Supreme Court handed down its decision in Schulmeyer v. State Farm, holding that the policy at issue did not provide coverage for claims of diminished value




Do you also have collision coverage on your vehicle? I understand that UMPD is required in your state with a 200 deductible. So if you have collision coverage as well as UMPD, is UMPD always primary? I doubt the arguement would hold water, but could be made, (worth a shot I guess) that since you are being paid under your UMPD coverage rather than collision coverage, you are a third party claimant, (another caused your damage)...therefore you are eligible for a DV claim. But honestly doubt this will hold any merit, I'd still make the argument.



Do you have rental? or does the UMPD coverage in your policy provide rental? If so has the rental amout been considered part of the loss ?



I would ask the adjuster just how sure they are that they have addressed all the damage? I would also contact the shop and talk to the shop manager or foreman, and discuss this with him or her as well...remember now, the shop wants to fix the car, that's what they are in business to do, they don't make much money on a total Wink . But ask what (if anything) is possibly damaged that has not yet been addressed...Ask the adjuster should we discover that the tranny is damaged and requires replacement and the majority of the repairs have already been completed, will the vehicle still not be considered a total loss if it (supplemental damage) caused the repair to eclipses the 75% threshold?



Also something about the percentage threshold, in my state (not sure about SC didn't see any info on that)...when the percent rule comes into play...all airbag damage, and all sales tax is deducted from the estimate...or to put it another way, this money doesn't count toward the 75% rule. If the adjuster tells you that the cost of repair when figuring the percent rule is less than the actual cost of repair, they are telling you the truth. There could be other things that come out of the calculation, I've seen states that (as an example) remove tires, and towing from the estimate, re: percentage rule..


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 12, 2009 3:36 pm   Post subject:   

Thank you for your help. I do not know what the ACV is of the vehicle, that is what I found through kbb and nada. I do have GAP insurance and realize the shop wants to fix the car.



So maybe I missed something. You are saying that the insurance company finds out what the value they can get for the car as far as salvage and deducts that from the ACV and that is what they can spend to repair the vehicle?



We do not have a rental car at this time, but as soon as the repairs begin we will receive the rental car. The car isn't on a hoist, it's just on the ground with those parts off.



We do have collision coverage, but since he doesn't have insurance we are forced to file under the UMPD, which like you said, the deductible is reduced to 200.



I also have the same question as far as if they are in the middle of the repairs and the supplemental damage passes the threshold if the repairs would stop and the car would be considered a total loss. I've asked and haven't received an answer yet. The customer service is pretty terrible there. The person handling my claim never answers the phone and rarely returns phone calls. I work from 7-7 mon-thu and get off early fri which is when I get the lovely customer service. They have email which I've sent several emails and also haven't received a response.



From my understanding, the airbags didn't deploy due to a sensor in the seats, so that is a non factor.



Another thing is that they said there was a bungie cord placed on the rear of my car. Now, when it left my house there wasn't one there and when I went and looked at the vehicle it wasn't there. There didn't appear to be any damage, but why on earth would it be there and then be gone?



My main concern is the transmission. I just don't see why they won't look at that to see if it needs to be repaired to factor that into the estimate. I've seen so many cars get totaled out for much less damage, it just seems to be the way it always works out for me.

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 13, 2009 10:44 am   Post subject:   

Quote:
You are saying that the insurance company finds out what the value they can get for the car as far as salvage and deducts that from the ACV and that is what they can spend to repair the vehicle?
Yes, or the cost of repair hits 75% of the ACV for your state.



Quote:
I've asked and haven't received an answer yet. The customer service is pretty terrible there. The person handling my claim never answers the phone and rarely returns phone calls. I work from 7-7 mon-thu and get off early fri which is when I get the lovely customer service. They have email which I've sent several emails and also haven't received a response.


Call back on your lunch break, if you get your adjusters voice mail hit 'zero' that should route you to someone else, when you get that 'other person' ask to speak to your adjusters supervisor, if you get their v/m then advise them you are leaving ONE message for them. When you call back then next time you want THEIR supervisor and so on. Trust me...start climbing the ladder and you'll get results..
Quote:
I just don't see why they won't look at that to see if it needs to be repaired to factor that into the estimate.
Well didn't you say the susp/steering is damaged? If it's non-driveable, it's pretty hard to check a tranny...didn't you say it went up and over a curb? If so then the undercarriage needs to be inspected.



Call the shop and talk with them re: have they started on it ? Have they looked under the car? Explain it went up and over a curb and you want to know about additional damage BEFORE you sign a repair authorization or have you already given them permission to repair?

Quote:
I've seen so many cars get totaled out for much less damage, it just seems to be the way it always works out for me.
It's not personel, it's all numbers...If you want, give me the mileage, and all options and I'll figure a value and see where the 75% threshold is for sure...Also is there any UNREPAIRED prior damage on the vehicle? That would lower it's value.


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 13, 2009 10:49 pm   Post subject:   

My wife signed for the estimate which I guess gives them permission, but when we left she called them and told them not to work on the car.



It's a 07 Hyundai Elantra with 43,000 miles on it. It has the basics: cruise control, pw, pl, heated mirrors, single cd player. They mentioned that the car came in with a bungie cord on the right rear. That is beyond me why it went in with it on unless it did damage on its venture up the curb or while in the tow companies possession.



My work schedule doesn't allow for calls during working hours since she never answers the phone and you have to leave a voice message and you never know if she will call back. My wife called today and left a message and never heard back from them. I wish I knew a way to get this rolling, it's USAA by the way if anyone knows the number to corporate or something to help me out.

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 13, 2009 11:27 pm   Post subject:   

Is it an Elantra, 'GLS', 'Limited' or 'SE'? also...does it have aluminum/alloy wheels, Infinity stereo, power seat, power sun roof, automatic or manual tranny?



Quote:
They mentioned that the car came in with a bungie cord on the right rear.
Sounds like the rear bumper cover was falling off...could've happened in the tow.



Has the shop given you any information, re: additional damage found?
Quote:
I wish I knew a way to get this rolling, it's USAA by the way if anyone knows the number to corporate or something to help me out.
I'm tryin' hon...have your wife call back tomorrow, 'zero' out like I told you ask for the adjusters boss...tell the adjusters boss that you have left 'blank' amount of messages, (keep track of the date and time etc. that you leave these)...and that you are getting tried of not having your calls returned...tell them the times that they can reach your wife. Call the shop see if the shop has talked to the adjuster...if so is there any additional damage that has been found that was not on the original estimate? If so what is that damage, and how much is the estimate now? If not, why has no one looked at the undercarriage? Has anyone tested the tranny? What are the plans for that etc.?


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 14, 2009 12:34 am   Post subject:   

It's a GLS, auto, with steel wheels and hubcaps, and none of the other stuff.



I told her about the asking for a boss and that is the plan for tomorrow.



Thanks again for the help. We've never had to use the insurance, this is all new to us.

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 14, 2009 10:41 am   Post subject:   

We're pretty close, I'm getting an ACV of $10,375.00 so $7781.75 totals it. If there is tranny damage, that should kick it in the head.. I've never seen a tranny replacement (nobody rebuilds them anymore) cost less than 1200.00 or so...let us know what you find out and if we can be of further assistance...Tell your wife to be strong and assertive..



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PostPosted: Tue Jul 14, 2009 9:34 pm   Post subject:   

She spoke to a manager today and finally found out what was going on. They are sending an "expert" out to estimate the damages tomorrow. He is going to call with the results. So this is the guy that I need to talk to I'm guessing.



Thanks again for the help!

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PostPosted: Wed Jul 15, 2009 12:18 am   Post subject:   

Quote:
So this is the guy that I need to talk to I'm guessing.
yep...let us know how it goes


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"Never, never be afraid to do what's right, especially if the well being of a person or animal is at stake. Society's punishments are small compared to the wounds we inflict on our soul when we look the other way." Martin Luther King Jr.
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 19, 2009 9:41 pm   Post subject:   

Just an update, they found the rear bumper to be a loss and that must be replaced. So the total is up to $6,889, but I still couldn't convince them to total it out. So it is getting fixed.



My wife wants to trade it in when we get it back. The only way I'll do that that is if we can get what we owe on it so that way we aren't upside down.



So lets say hypothetically that they get the suspension body work fixed, and the transmission is somehow messed up. Would the vehicle then be considered totaled?



I'd like to thank you for your help!

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 20, 2009 2:28 am   Post subject:   

I just cannot believe anybody could give any better or more satisfying answer than Lori. Hats off to you Lori. Pls. keep up your efforts to help the once in insurance trouble.

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 20, 2009 11:32 am   Post subject:   

Quote:
Would the vehicle then be considered totaled?
That depends on the company. I've seen cars totaled after they have been repaired, when something popped up, and I've seen them (carriers) just continue to throw good money after bad. I would think that they will have the tranny checked as soon as they get a suspension under it. You have a good case once that repair hit's the pecent threshold since it's on the books in your state. What did the adjuster say about it, should that happen?


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Lori
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