Serious Accident: Wished to be totaled and still hoping.

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PostPosted: Fri Nov 01, 2013 2:58 am   Post subject: Serious Accident: Wished to be totaled and still hoping.  

I currently have a 2013 Subaru WRX sedan 5-speed manual Premium edition.



On 6/22/2013 i was involved in a T-bone accident on my right side @ about 45 mph. The car was a disaster.The airbags never deployed Luckily me and my wife were not hurt.



Unfortunately I don't know how to upload pictures here, but basically is this..



Bent like a banana.. Had to pull frame straight



Couldn't start the car

$9,700 in repairs



I do not have rental car on my policy so they said it would take 23 days for repair in original estimate. September 26, 2013 i finally received my car taking 4x longer then originally estimated. So i now have a very expensive rental car bill...



After having the car for a week i noticed all the problems it had still..

-Very loud inside the car -steering wheel shaking - not driving straight- making weird noised like grinding when I reverse.



I dropped the car back off at the shop after a week, they said the car had no problems and everything was fine. I immediately took it to a Subaru dealer nearby and they said it sounded like the baring in the front differental.

I couldn't leave my car at that time so it left. Soon after I dropped my car off at another dealer to have them check it out. I needed a new rotor and a few other parts suspension wise. This was all covered as it was determined from the original claim. total estimate was in the $1000s



After having the car i still noticed something was off I dropped it off again at the dealer. They said i had a broken steering column and needed a new one. total cost $981



I went again to pick up the car when to reverse away and it still made that grinding noise. I left the car again at the dealer ship upset that this was never ending...



The dealership said i needed a new pitch mount which hold the transmission.

I just picked up the car today..



After driving i notice there is still some issues with the car. the grinding in reverse still is not fixed and it still makes noise behind the dashboard which makes it loud in the car.



I Feel like i am out of options. i cant keep leaving the car especially when i have to pay for rentals. this has started to effect my daily life, my job, my duties as a dad, as well as others.. I just want this to be over. I wanted them to total my car in the beginning.. What can i do?

Nate22
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 01, 2013 5:23 am   Post subject:   

This is not really an insurance question. It appears that the insurance company is taking care of the expenses as they should. Your issue is with the repairs and repair facilities. That's a matter for the state consumer agency that regulates those businesses.



Additionally, all of your expenses such as rental car, are not the responsibility of your insurance company, they are a liability of the party that caused your damages. You submit that bill to their insurance company, and if denied, then you sue the at fault party in small claims court.



Quote:
I wanted them to total my car in the beginning.
Sorry, but that's not your call. If the insurance company chooses to make repairs (their obligation is to repair, replace, or reimburse), then the quality of repairs is a problem for the repair facility to correct.



You use the insurance company to put pressure on the repair facility to make it right. At the very least, however, you will probably have a good case to make for diminished value on top of your actual damages. That is something you resolve with the insurance company.


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 01, 2013 9:11 am   Post subject:   

How would you suggest I do that? For the diminished value? When I spoke to insurance company, they said they are not responsible for value after accident but to get it to how it was before the accident. The car has 10,000 miles on it with a terrible car fax.

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PostPosted: Fri Nov 01, 2013 11:29 am   Post subject:   

Quote:
When I spoke to insurance company, they said they are not responsible for value after accident
Well, that's only partially true. They -- PERSONALLY -- are not responsible, but their insured is. So, if diminished value can be proved, they, ultimately, have to pay the claim -- up to the limit of liability in the contract they have with their insured. Obviously, their goal is to minimize their loss by leading you to believe what they say is 100% correct.



So what is Diminished Value compared to Actual Cash Value?



As I've already stated, the basic responsibility under the principle of indemnity in auto collision claims is to meet Actual Cash Value in the event of a total loss. ACV is Replacement Cost minus Depreciation. The newer a vehicle, the lower the mileage, the more well-equipped it is, the less depreciated its value will be. ACV is the measure by which a total loss is calculated (if repair costs exceed about 75%-80% of ACV, the vehicle is "totaled"). ACV is the pre-collision value of the vehicle. "Indemnity" (to be indemnified) means to restore you to that value.



Diminished Value is different. If the vehicle is not totaled, DV is the amount by which the Resale Value (effectively, the after-collision Replacement Cost) of a damaged/repaired vehicle has been reduced as the result of the damage sustained in the collision. There are two types of Diminished Value, and this explanation is essentially that of "Inherent" DV. Just knowing that your vehicle has been in a collision and was repaired to drivable condition, diminishes its value. And you are entitled to that difference.



IDV assumes that the repairs were perfect, and that even the "trained eye" would have difficulty spotting any defects in the repairs without taking a closer look. According to your description of the trouble you are experiencing, this suggests that your vehicle has not been repaired perfectly.



In your case, then, it is the second type of DV that we're now speaking about. "Repair Related" DV includes the additional amounts by which your vehicle's resale value has been reduced because of less-than-perfect repairs. This could include anything from major structural defects to minor cosmetic imperfections (bad Bondo and paint work), .



How do you prove RRDV vs. IDV?



That's the relatively easy part. One way is to take your vehicle to a dealer that sells your make and model of vehicle new. You ask them what the trade-in value of your vehicle would have been if in undamaged condition, and what it would be if it had been in a relatively minor collision and "perfectly" repaired. That's the IDV. Then you ask what it is actually worth knowing all the damage and repairs that have been made. That's the RRDV.



The difference between the undamaged Trade-In Value and the RRDV is amount of your DV claim. That's the extent to which the collision has "damaged" your ability to be indemnified, or "restored to whole."



And that's what you would be awarded in court by presenting the evidence above. The at-fault party's insurance company should pay that amount on demand and without any argument, as long as that amount plus what they have already paid for repairs (plus your added claim for rental vehicle expense) is below the policy's limit of liability for property damage.



If the total amount of loss exceeds the policy limit, then you are going to have to sue the at-fault party for 100% of your loss, get a judgment, and collect the total amount from the at-fault party. That person will be granted an "offset" in the amount of insurance money that has already been paid for repairs to date, plus any additional amount of insurance money his/her insurance company will pay directly to you up to the policy limit, and will then owe you the balance in order to satisfy the judgment.



Or you can accept the policy limit amount as your damages in full and sign a release of liability with the insurance company and accept a check for the difference between what they have already paid and the limit amount. That may or may not be acceptable to you, because you will still own the vehicle in whatever condition the repairs to that point have provided.



You can still press your complaints about unsatisfactory repairs with the repair facility, and demand that repairs be completed properly. The state consumer protection agency that oversees repair shops will help with that. (And it could be that if you had to sue anyone, you could include the repair shop in your suit if the total damage award will exceed the at-fault party's policy limit.)



If you don't think you can handle this on your own (I don't think it's all that difficult), your options are to hire someone who claims to be an expert in handling DV claims to argue your position with the insurance company for you -- and they will get about 10% of the recovery -- or hire an attorney to sue the at-fault party -- which will cost you 30%-40% of the recovery. That choice is yours to make.



However, you could have a lot of trouble finding an attorney to take a DV case simply because there is not much money in it for them. Personal injury is different, because there can be a lot of zeroes and two commas in the final judgment amount. Finding a DV expert will be much easier, and, obviously, less costly for you. But you are still going to give up 10% (or more) of your loss.



You have to decide if you are willing to do that, or stand your ground and get it on your own.



Weenie or Warrior? Which one will you choose?


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Last edited by MaxHerr on Fri Nov 01, 2013 11:52 am
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 01, 2013 11:50 am   Post subject:   

This was the best advice I've had. Thank you! I will b calling insurance adjuster with this info today! Ill Keep you posted!

Thank you! *fingers crossed*

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PostPosted: Fri Nov 01, 2013 11:54 am   Post subject:   

Please re-read my response above, because I was busy making some edits when you replied.



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PostPosted: Fri Nov 01, 2013 4:24 pm   Post subject:   

Does this still apply if i live in michigan..

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PostPosted: Fri Nov 01, 2013 4:43 pm   Post subject:   

Even if you don't live in Michigan. It's a common legal principle.



Like anything else "legal", you have to prove your loss. So you do that with documentation as described. Just get it in writing from the dealership. Get numbers from two or three dealerships if you have the time. The more the merrier. (And you'll find out the differences between dealer used vehicle pricing, too.)



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PostPosted: Sat Nov 02, 2013 8:46 pm   Post subject:   

Quote:
Additionally, all of your expenses such as rental car, are not the responsibility of your insurance company, they are a liability of the party that caused your damages. You submit that bill to their insurance company, and if denied, then you sue the at fault party in small claims court.




Quote:
Does this still apply if i live in michigan




Yes. MI is a true no fault state. You are only allowed to collect up to $500 from the at fault party.


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 15, 2013 6:56 pm   Post subject:   

The statutory definition of diminution of value in most states is defined as the difference in the value of a vehicle immediately moments before and accident occurs and the value immediately after. Repairs to the vehicle restore a portion of the value if contemplated.



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