Accident claim w/potential flaky insured

Jul 11, 2018

  1. stevenk2
    Offline

    stevenk2 New Member

    Posts:
    4
    Likes Received:
    0
    State:
    Oregon
    My daughter was driving my car and was backed into by a minivan on the street. Relatively minor damage to my car, but still likely a few thousand in damage. The other driver was at fault, and she filed with her insurance company (Progressive); they have worked on processing the claim for two weeks now, but have still not reached a settlement with me. Here's the issue - apparently their insured had just purchased the minivan (likely a private-party sale, BTW), there's some question regarding the paperwork that determines ownership of the vehicle, and that's what's holding up the claim/settlement with Progressive. The other driver has been slow to get info back to Progressive, and after two weeks of waiting on things, I'm losing hope that Progressive is going to settle with me on the claim, so I'll likely just go ahead and file with my insurance to get my car fixed.

    My question is in a case like this accident, how is coverage provided? I know that if I'm driving a car, whether it's mine or someone else's, there should be insurance coverage in an accident regardless. But at a more detailed level, if I get in an accident while driving a vehicle that is owned by someone else (as may technically be the case with this accident), what transactions occur with the insurance(s) involved in regards to the claims? If I have Insurance X and the person's vehicle that I borrowed has Insurance Y, and if I'm at fault in the accident, what insurance covers what? And what would the other party that I hit see on their end as far as the claim goes?
     
    stevenk2, Jul 11, 2018
    #1
  2. djs
    Offline

    djs Super Moderator Moderator

    Posts:
    6,673
    Likes Received:
    67
    State:
    California
    This type of mixed drivers / cars / owners / whatever happens a lot, more often than most people realize. Because of this, there are standards that the insurance companies use. Please note that this answer could change with any particular situation, so its just a guideline, not necessarily the 'final' answer.

    Simply put, insurance belongs to a car, not a driver, for claim purposes. This means the policy that lists the car specifically is the primary policy to cover accidents related to a claim involving that car. Doesn't matter who was driving, the policy that lists the car is the primary coverage.

    Lots of little things can happen in that statement, such as policy lapses, insufficient liability coverages, etc, where they may go to the drivers policy, but that is not most cases, but it can happen.

    From there though, the accidents are rated to drivers, not cars. So if you were driving a friends car and caused an accident, your friends insurance policy would pay for the damage but your insurance rates would go up (when your insurance company finds out and on renewal).

    Keep in mind, when accidents occur involving drivers that are not listed on the policy, the insurance carrier will ask a lot more questions then when everything lines up. Just expect it, don't worry about it, just answer them.

    ------

    Just purchased: If they had a car prior to the car they just bought (and that car was insured), then their policy would cover it still. Of course, if they hadn't actually bought the car yet then the policy of the original owner would pay for the damage, assuming there was coverage.
     
    djs, Jul 12, 2018
    #2
  3. VolAgent
    Offline

    VolAgent Guru

    Posts:
    14,658
    Likes Received:
    1,299
    State:
    Tennessee
    Progressive may be trying to determine who actually owns the car, and thus whose insurance would be the primary policy.
     
    VolAgent, Jul 12, 2018
    #3
  4. adjusterjack
    Offline

    adjusterjack Guru

    Posts:
    828
    Likes Received:
    224
    State:
    Arizona
    The friend's policy would also be surcharged because the policy paid for the damage on behalf of "an insured."

    It would be on the friend's CLUE report so changing insurance companies isn't likely to help.
     
  5. stevenk2
    Offline

    stevenk2 New Member

    Posts:
    4
    Likes Received:
    0
    State:
    Oregon
    Thanks so much for the reply on this, very much appreciated! I'm not well-versed in auto claims (fortunately, I suppose), and I wasn't sure where to turn for reasonable/honest answers from an unbiased third party not involved in my current claim.

    Given the limited amount of info I'm getting back from Progressive at this point, I'm only making educated guesses with regards to the status of the claim, but it seems logical that they're hung up trying to determine the vehicle's ownership. From what my daughter has reported to me regarding the other driver, she seems a little flaky, so it wouldn't surprise me to find out that her (private party) purchase of the van didn't exactly dot all of the I's and cross all of the T's in the process. I'm not exactly sure how things will end up for her, but I guess in the meantime I just need to proceed with filing the claim with my insurance to get my car fixed now instead of continuing to wait on Progressive. I expect that there is a time limit on filing a claim after an accident occurs, and since it's already been two weeks, that clock is counting down. It just really bothers me that I have to file a claim against my policy due to someone else's lack of responsibility, and especially with an adult that apparently is more irresponsible than my teenage daughter.
     
    stevenk2, Jul 12, 2018
    #5
  6. fed up
    Offline

    fed up Super Genius

    Posts:
    118
    Likes Received:
    47
    State:
    Virginia
    I just went through this with an accident involving my daughter. File with your own company (hope you have full coverage on the vehicle) and let your company figure out who to chase for the money. I could not get the other party to file the claim with their insurer even though I had a police report and a copy of the insurance card. I called her company and they could not get her to speak to them on the phone. Eventually she understood that she either filed the claim or she would be paying out of pocket without regard to her policy
     
    fed up, Jul 12, 2018
    #6
  7. stevenk2
    Offline

    stevenk2 New Member

    Posts:
    4
    Likes Received:
    0
    State:
    Oregon
    Yeah, I'm thinking that with the clock ticking away on this, the only way I'm going to come out of it without having to foot the entire bill for repairs is to file with my insurance. It's likely going to be awhile before they figure out which way things will go on the other side, and in the end, I don't really care how they work it out per se, so long as it's not coming out of my pocket. The only downfall with filing with my insurance is if somehow that comes back to haunt me with higher rates and/or if they don't renew with me somewhere down the line. I'm a good customer (i.e. no citations, no claims previously, always pay on time, etc), so they'd have no cause except for this incident - I just don't know where that line in the sand is with regards to claims. I just don't want to screw myself because of a relatively minor fender-bender is all, and especially one where I wasn't at fault.
     
    stevenk2, Jul 12, 2018
    #7
  8. LostDollar
    Offline

    LostDollar Guru

    Posts:
    2,396
    Likes Received:
    376
    State:
    Kansas
    My view, if you can get them to 25 or so, alive and in one piece, you've won.

    Looking at my brother and I, and at my kids, I think there is a good chance of some going both ways (your kids' fault and not your kids' fault) over the years.

    I still remember the horrible bitterness expressed to me sometime back by a former pastor's wife over the automotive accident death of their teenaged son, some twenty years earlier.
     
  9. fed up
    Offline

    fed up Super Genius

    Posts:
    118
    Likes Received:
    47
    State:
    Virginia
    I was fortunate in a way; the other party lived in Louisiana and statute there says you must file or you will have no support from your insurance company plus some penalties for not reporting in a timely manner. I understand that an insurance company MUST believe their insured but this chick would not answer the phone until threatened with a crime and loss of coverage
     
    fed up, Jul 12, 2018
    #9
  10. stevenk2
    Offline

    stevenk2 New Member

    Posts:
    4
    Likes Received:
    0
    State:
    Oregon
    It's a messy business sometimes for sure - like I said, in the end, I just want to make sure that I'm covered, both with this specific claim and in the longer run with my current insurance.

    It's ironic to me that a 30-something woman who should know better by now about the rules, be a responsible adult and the one setting the example for the younger generation here clearly is not doing any of that. The circumstances of the accident were a bit more involved, but suffice it to say that the other driver experienced a bit of road rage in a construction zone, and it was totally uncalled for and completely avoidable. Now she's going to be paying the price for her bad judgement - maybe she'll learn her lesson, but I doubt it. I'm just thankful nobody was hurt and it only resulted in some relatively minor damage to the front of my car.

    I know that statistically young drivers under the age of 25 are more likely to be involved in accidents (and/or the cause of accidents), but there are still an awful lot of folks over the age of 25 out there driving around who should be exercising better judgement and should know better. I mean, there are still kids between 16 and 25 that go out and do stupid stuff on the road, but it does make one wonder how many of the accidents in that age group happen because of a young driver not knowing how to properly react to a situation rather than outright intentional recklessness. I suppose from the insurance's point of view it doesn't really matter though - they're still on the hook for when it's their insured's fault, and that apparently happens more often with young drivers.
     
Loading...