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How to handle multiple vehicle damage claim..

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doublj70

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Hello,
Last night some idiot stole my drain grates from my car wash, including the main pit, which left about a 3 foot square open hole. By the time I got there, a total of 3 cars had driven in and got stuck. Two of these were damaged. One couple was very angry and were talking lawsuits, and mentioned they wanted to be paid extra on top of the damages for the stress. The other guy seemed more reasonable. I hate to claim on my insurance for fear of them dropping me or raising the rates. My deductible is $1000, and I was thinking if the total damage is only a couple thousand, it might be better to just pay it myself. Where do you guys draw the line between filing a claim and just paying yourself? Also, how would you deal with the couple who want extra damages for their stress etc...? Any advice would be greatly appreciated!

Thanks, John
 

Randy

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Don?t try to handle it yourself, they?ll eat you alive. Turn it over to your insurance company. Let them do the fighting. I see you?re from California. Are you a member of the WCA? They have a very good insurance program.
 

PaulLovesJamie

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I would definitely turn this one over to my insurance co. Also, if you did not get a police report filed for the theft of the grates, do it NOW.
 

Earl Weiss

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1. File the police report. The intervening criminal act may have reduced or mitigated your liability. 2. If you settle any claim yourself have your lawyer give you a boilerplate release for any and all damages including personal injury. Make them sign it when you give them the check. Make sure anyone in the car signs it. . 3. Ask your lawyer. Stress for any delays or aggravation may not be compensable. So only offer to pay the property Damage. 4. Use your insurance company for leverage for anyone reluctant to settle for damage only. Tell them "Listen, I am sorry . It wasn't my fault. Sonme criminal caused the problem and they are the ones liable. As a goodwill measure only I am willing to pay for your damage, but you must sign a release. If this is not acceptable, I will turn it over to my insurance comapny and you can deal with them. 5. Secure your grates and / or go to fibergalss which isn't worth stealing.
 

Kevin Reilly

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John,
Where are you located in California? I was called about 2 weeks ago about the same thing happening in the Modesto area, Riverbank and Escalon.
 

randall

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that happened to me and cost me 1200.00 in damage. you should bolt a chain through one of the slats of the grate and anchor the other end to the inside of the pit
 

doublj70

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Hopefully the end of my Multi claim nightmare

Hello,
I thought I'd throw in an update on this situation. I ended up paying off individuals whos vehicles were damaged. My insurance agent that each car would be a separate claim, with a $1500 deductible for each, and a $1000 deductible if I wanted to claim the grates. I eneded up paying about $5k in damages to the 3 people, who claimed everything from emotional stress to not feeling safe with their old seat belt, because it was stretched from the accident. I also bought my own replacement drain grates. So, in the end I paid about $1k over what all the deductibles would have been, and I don't have to deal with my rates getting raised from the claims.
It was a humbling experience, negotiating with, and paying off these people. I guess I should feel fortunate no one claimed injury....
I thought all the vehicles would have fallen under one claim, as it was all a result of the stolen drain grates. Do you guys think my insurance sucks, or is that standard procedure to split them up in separate claims?

Thanks, John T.
 

E.Joramo

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Shop around for a new insurance company, and tell your current one "Thanks for Nothing." It may get them to change their tune to keep your business.
Erik
 
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