Cannot Afford Deductible. Are These Valid Options??

Discussion in 'Auto Insurance Forum' started by BeachBound1967, Feb 8, 2012.

  1. BeachBound1967
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    BeachBound1967 New Member

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    I have a 2004 Ford Escape that is fully covered under Geico. I owe about $3000 on my car. My deductible is $1000. (My husband passed away last year and so I'm living on one income now). So...although I could have afforded to pay this a few year ago when I first enrolled, I cannot afford the deductible now.

    Last weekend, I had my kayak tied to the top of the SUV and it was partially blown off the top by strong winds. It knocked around the body of the car pretty hard before I could stop. There are several dents in different areas and I'm guessing the cost to repair this will be high since the dents are in several different locations.

    So..now I'm trying to figure out my options because I cannot afford the deductible. I know very little about car insurance so excuse me if this question is less than intelligent....but is there a way I can file a claim, get an estimate, and take a check instead of going directly through the repair garage? I know people do this who don't owe on their car, but since I'm still making payments on my car, I know that changes things.

    Or....unless I am mistaken...it is also my understanding that if the damage will cost more than what is owed on the car, than other options exist? Did I get that right as well?

    What can I do here? I don't care about having the car repaired right away but I need to do something. The car is drive-able, and I can live with the dents for awhile (even though it looks bad). I hope this makes sense.

    Please help if you can.

    Thank you.
     
  2. joshb
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    joshb Well-Known Member

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    You have a duty to notify the insurance carrier as soon as you can, So file the claim (if you want them to pay for it), but get an estimate first and make sure its over $1,000 first. You will have to pay your deductible either way (thats the point of the deductible), but the body shop you choose, may work with you in paying your portion of the damages (i.e. $1,000), there are several shops in my area, that offer payment plans. In the meantime, call your agent, and lower your deductible since you can't afford it.
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    Just to add a little bit, I have a 2010 Toyota tundra, and I had body damage down the side and back bumper, and the repair cost for it was only $1,300. No sense in filing a claim for that little bit over your deductible. So get an estimate first and you may see that it can be cheaper than you anticipate.
     
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2012
  3. xrac
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    xrac Well-Known Member

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    You say strong winds blew the kayak. I am not a P&C agents so I ask this question of those that are. Is there a possibility that this is a comprehensive claim and she would have a lower dedutible?
     
  4. BlockO
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    BlockO Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, it's a comp claim. And it's not uncommon for people to have a lower deductible for comp than they do collision. But I am assuming that's not the case here, since she knew what her deductible was.
     
  5. Turz
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    Turz Well-Known Member

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    You should never have a $1,000 deduct for comp. Geico should have explained the price difference for comp in that it's much more affordable than collision.
     
  6. Guest
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    I have a number of people that have 1000 deduct on comp, why should Geico explain the difference? They dont have agents, they have call takers, there is a difference and thats what you get when you dont use an agent.

    BTW Turz, thx for commenting on 24 threads! :swoon:
     
  7. briko3
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    briko3 Well-Known Member

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    Go to your local dealership and ask what day the "dent guy" comes. The guy here charges about 30-40 bucks to pull out a few dents. Seems like you could do it for waay under $1000 if it's just dents.
     
  8. LGilmore
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    LGilmore Well-Known Member

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    I guess my question and I will be the bad guy here, is why do you want a check from the insurance company if you're not going to fix the car?

    Is your plan to hold the check, undeposited until you go in to get it fixed? or are you going to deposit the check?

    You may just have to live with the dents. I'm sorry.
     
  9. djs
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    djs Super Moderator Moderator

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    If you suffered a loss, you are entitled to a check for the damage. There isn't an insurance requirement that the damage be repaired, but your finance company will require it.

    Because the car is financed, the insurance company will only do a two party check to you, basically the body shop and you or the finance company and you. They have an obligation to protect the finance companies interest in the car.

    You might try calling someplace like a dentpro or any of the other places that deal with this type of damage. Basically, they use a suction cup and pull the dent back out. Doesn't work for everything, but it's probably not serious damage and this might be a way to at least get the more serious looking dents removed for a few hundred dollars.

    I agree with other advice though, try getting a lower comp deductible for future claims. It's amazingly little money, if the company will do different deductibles between comp and collision (not all do).

    Dan
     
  10. Guest
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    Guest Guest

    ^^^^^^^^^^^^ BINGO

    This is actually a pathetic thread......
     

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