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8 posts

Wannabe Geek


Topic # 209184 16-Mar-2017 17:25
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Hi all,


I'm in a bit of a pickle and wanted to get some advice / info.


Me: Third party insurance. Car value = approx $10-12k (I know I should have full insurance but was charged a fortune due to my age so dropped this down after 2 years - talk about timing). Parked car hit - bumper, taillight smashed. Two alloy wheels damaged as impact pushed my car towards the kerb.


Other driver: No insurance. Age 60+ with history of hearth condition. Had been working in the sun that day and was dizzy but decided to drive home anyways. Was taken to hospital as he blacked out - couldn't remember whether this was before or due to the crash. Witness says he drove into my car without braking at all, so probably the former. He contacted me as soon as he got out of hospital - said he'd pay for damages + excess if charged by insurance.


Under my 3rd party cover, insurance is willing to pay up to $4k in damages providing other party admits liability - which he did when they called him. We've had 4 quotes now all about $7k. No chassis damage reported but seems that because they're all panelbeaters and a chunk of my bumper is missing (stuck on the other car), it would be loads of work to "build" a new one.


I enquired myself to see how much a new oem bumper + taillight would cost = $2200. Add some panel beating, fitting and painting cost, I would have thought it'd land around the $4k mark, however insurance usually likes to go via way of panelbeaters so they probably will just write it off imo. Still waiting for them to contact me though.


How does the write off work? $4k is not even worth half my car but because I'm only 3rd party I can't get anymore + have heard people say they were only paid x even though their car was insured for x due to market value. Since you don't get to declare the value of your car on 3rd party, anyone know how they'd decide how much to pay out?


Others told me insurance will ask wreckers how much the metal is worth but those places give next to nothing for the metal (which is what I assume I'd get paid) then sell all the parts separate for profit, so could I strip the car and give them just the metal?


What options do I have here? Do I have any grounds to ask the person to pay the rest of the car value? How could we decide a fair value? If they were to write off my vehicle, will the other driver get billed the $4k (or however much) they pay me?


I do feel bad for him but at the same time, I'm now technically out about $6k (assuming they pay me full $4k) / a car as it isn't legally driveable. It's such a hassle (for everyone involved I know) as I'm now borrowing the car from my dad if he's home or getting a lift from my friend to get to work, run errands etc.


Police suggested I take him to Disputes as there's no way to guarantee he pays + he's only been in NZ for 3 months and I don't wanna be stuck with a big bill if he goes back home - I don't know if there's another way around this? He has been very co-operative so far although he thought it'd cost max $2k to fix, + if I go disputes police mentioned he may be charged with careless driving....


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  Reply # 1740426 16-Mar-2017 17:37
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Prime example of why third party insurance in NZ should be compulsory. Then you could claim off his insurance...

 

 

 

As it is, unless he has plenty of assets or cash, I would say you'll be whistling for your money if he gets squirrelly. However he has said he will pay, so have you actually asked him to do that?

 

 

 

What you get would depend on the policy wording - to be honest, I am surprised that they are offering you anything in these circumstances. Third party would not usually pay the policy holder anything unless the claim was for fire or theft.








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Wannabe Geek


  Reply # 1740435 16-Mar-2017 18:11
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Waiting for insurance to get back to me next week after 'hashing out the best plan of attack' with the repairers but will know my options next week and have another chat to him.

 

He doesn't have the money to pay upfront, so it'd have to drag out over years. Given that info, police suggested I take him to disputes to protect myself in case he stops paying, goes back home, falls ill again etc as he's only been here a short while and has had a few health scares already...He's on a minimum wage job - has talked to his manager about more shifts but has been declined due to his health issue and risk if given more hours...

 

edit: i too was surprised and only found out about the "up to 4k if not at fault on 3rd party" after a colleague mentioned it to me.


 
 
 
 


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  Reply # 1740445 16-Mar-2017 19:01
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Best plan of attack is take the cash and get rid of the car. Once damaged it will never work properly and other bits you didn't know about will start to fail one by one. Over time it will cost you a fortune. Trust me, cut your losses now.


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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 1742655 17-Mar-2017 11:52
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Geektastic:

 

Prime example of why third party insurance in NZ should be compulsory. Then you could claim off his insurance...

 

 

Absolutely not. I for one don't wish to insure your vehicle for you. If you're worried about someone else damaging it, you get some insurance to cover your own fears.

 

Geektastic:

 

to be honest, I am surprised that they are offering you anything in these circumstances. Third party would not usually pay the policy holder anything unless the claim was for fire or theft.

 

 

All NZ 3rd party policies carry UTP cover for a specified maximum with conditions.





"War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. The decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks that nothing is worth war is much worse. The person who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing which is more important than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature and has no chance of being free unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself."
- John Stuart Mill


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  Reply # 1742659 17-Mar-2017 12:04
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trisik:

 

he's only been here a short while and has had a few health scares already...He's on a minimum wage job - has talked to his manager about more shifts but has been declined due to his health issue and risk if given more hours...

 

 

This is interesting. Would you care to elaborate if you know the details.

 

I followed the case of Martyn Payne with interest. They dragged him over the coals over his heart condition in his battle for residency even though he was making a significant contribution to NZ as a business owner, particularly the depressed local Kapiro area. Yet this fellow that wrecked your car seems to be in much the same situation with far less contribution and doesn't appear to have any such bureaucratic hindrances.

 

BTW the fact he has a medical condition and by your 2nd hand account that was the cause of the crash, he's not liable. So even had he had comprehensive cover, he would not be liable for the damage anyway so you'd be in the same boat with respects being out of pocket.





"War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. The decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks that nothing is worth war is much worse. The person who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing which is more important than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature and has no chance of being free unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself."
- John Stuart Mill




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Wannabe Geek


  Reply # 1742790 17-Mar-2017 14:59
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I see... The payout will only get me an old car with pretty high KMs but I need a car asap so if they offer it, I guess I'd have to take it. Same question stands, in this case, can I strip the car before they take my car to the wreckers? After all, they're paying me for just the "bare metal".

 

And what sort of details did you mean? I didn't delve into his life story as it's not my business. He moved to NZ to be with his brother (only remaining family since sister died in the quake) - didn't mention what he did prior to moving to NZ, think he's on work visa atm.

 

I find it ridiculous that he isn't liable purely cause he has a medical history. He can't prove whether he blacked out prior to crashing, neither can the doctors - for all we know he didn't break cause he has a slow reaction time. It was dangerous to drive in the condition he was in (head spinning + 30 degree heat = good time to drive? don't think so)- nevermind his heart condition which just adds to the danger.

 

Had I crashed with the same circumstance minus the heart condition I would be charged with careless driving.

 

If it were a drunk driver with a medical condition that crashed, would the same rule apply? He chose to drive in an unfit state. Both drink drivinig and careless driving are chargeable offenses.


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  Reply # 1742822 17-Mar-2017 16:31
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trisik:

 

I see... The payout will only get me an old car with pretty high KMs but I need a car asap so if they offer it, I guess I'd have to take it. Same question stands, in this case, can I strip the car before they take my car to the wreckers? After all, they're paying me for just the "bare metal".

 

And what sort of details did you mean? I didn't delve into his life story as it's not my business. He moved to NZ to be with his brother (only remaining family since sister died in the quake) - didn't mention what he did prior to moving to NZ, think he's on work visa atm.

 

I find it ridiculous that he isn't liable purely cause he has a medical history. He can't prove whether he blacked out prior to crashing, neither can the doctors - for all we know he didn't break cause he has a slow reaction time. It was dangerous to drive in the condition he was in (head spinning + 30 degree heat = good time to drive? don't think so)- nevermind his heart condition which just adds to the danger.

 

Had I crashed with the same circumstance minus the heart condition I would be charged with careless driving.

 

If it were a drunk driver with a medical condition that crashed, would the same rule apply? He chose to drive in an unfit state. Both drink drivinig and careless driving are chargeable offenses.

 

 

Insurers always want to recover as much of the value of the loss as they can. Just because it's not an economical repair for them doesn't mean it isn't for someone else. The vehicle may go to a damaged vehicle auction in which case your removal of anything would be devaluing it.

 

If he's just on a work permit then that's less surprising (for a work permit of <2 years you have to pay for your non-accident healthcare... in theory). I was just interested considering the hoops people have to jump through to recruit perfectly healthy employees.

 

It's not that you're not liable just because of medical history but that if he suffered a medical event that could not be reasonably expected to be imminent then it's not action or inaction thus there is no negligence - negligence is all liability insurance covers. You unintentionally fail to give way, stop short, stay on your side of the road - negligence - covered. Do it on purpose - wilful damage.

 

A drink-driver that has a heart attack causing a crash - there will be some effort made determine and apportion blame as that's more than one potential contributing factor. Every situation will be different.

 

I'm surprised his Doctor hasn't revoked his driver's licence... unless he's been here less than 12 months and is still on an international permit.





"War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. The decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks that nothing is worth war is much worse. The person who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing which is more important than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature and has no chance of being free unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself."
- John Stuart Mill


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  Reply # 1760460 10-Apr-2017 21:24
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Due to his health problems, would the guy who crashed into you even be able to get car insurance? As if you have a health problem that could affect your driving you would have to declare it to the insurance company for your cover to be valid.

 

Or if he did take out cover, but without declaring his health problems. Meaning his insurance company would decline the claim. And you would be back to square 1.








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Wannabe Geek


  Reply # 1760517 11-Apr-2017 00:27
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I'm not too sure what the rules are on health problems + insurance but his car was only worth about $1000 max so he chose not to get insured.

Got my max payout from insurer under 3rd party policy and kept car but it's useless with structural damage. Can really only get high mileage cars with $4k so will fork out to buy a new car so that I'm not essentially wasting that insurance money on a temp car.

To top it off, this muppet gets away scott free. Insurance won't recover the $4k from him as the hospital records couldn't prove it was/wasn't a medical emergency and said they'd have to fight on grounds of negligence which "isn't worth their time" given it would be he said she said.

Im considering DT anyway as he's stopped contact completely after repeated attempts to reach out to him. Also have him on recording saying he blinked then crashed (nothing about a blackout causing the crash ) and he mentioned "if you were in my state, you shouldn't drive cause it's dangerous but thought I'd be ok cause I don't live far". So he knew what he was doing was wrong, but did it anyways. I don't know how it could get more clear cut than that but I'll have to consult with CAB or something to make sure I have a chance cause that's another $200ish I have to spend on application fees =____=

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  Reply # 1760532 11-Apr-2017 06:03
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I'd be taking the legal avenues now. I probably would have from the start. You'll have a terrible time with it now though, your insurance company will already be attempting to get their costs from him, which is probably why he's gone to ground.

I don't really care for sob stories, 99% of the time they are self inflicted, and the people telling them just specialise in taking advantage of other peoples kindness.

for next time, I see AMI advertising that they don't treat young drivers differently, have you priced full cover with them.




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  Reply # 1760537 11-Apr-2017 07:13
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I'm sorry to sound harsh here, because you are not enjoying this, but insurance goes to the management of risk. That's all it is for. You elected to take 3rd party only, so you accepted a higher degree of risk for a reduced expenditure. When that risk is realised, you take a higher degree of the cost.

It is a simple, straightforward equation, and it didn't pay out for you.

I have sympathy for your age and the costs of insurance, but the simple fact is that, actuarially, younger people have a higher insurance risk.

It'll be interesting to see if you elect to take full cover next time.

I have a feeling, from your description, that you will never see any money from the other party, no matter what you do.




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  Reply # 1760543 11-Apr-2017 07:35
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So, OP. Have the insurance company paid you out? And they haven't written off your car (so you still have it)?

 

Can you not go to a few panelbeaters yourself for quotes? They should be cheaper if you are paying (and not the insurance company). Or, you could sell yours to a wrecker (or if you were keen and able, part it out yourself, you make a lot more off the parts than the whole).




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Wannabe Geek


  Reply # 1760629 11-Apr-2017 09:55
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Except they aren't chasing him for anything because it's not worth their hassle due to the "possible medical condition". He's paying ZERO. 

 

Last time I checked high risk driver statistics, around 80% "high risk" drivers were male. Going by statistics then, I would have expected the difference between insurance price for young male vs female to be quite different but really it's only approx $80 cheaper as a female. They are profiting by essentially hiking prices up for ALL young people but at the end of the day it's a business.

 

Anyways, this thread wasn't really to discuss the prices between young/old drivers but rather what I should do about the situation. Some people said give him a chance as he was co-operative at first but since we're well past that point now I guess I'll gather my resources and see how I go at DT. 

 

I think on the next car, I'll have my parents get full cover and list me as a second driver - works out about $300 cheaper. I really only use my car to/from work so apart from that my parents are usually the one out and about driving it anyways.

 

In regards to fixing it, I did get quotes without insurance and it's still approx $6.5K to fix from 3 different places and with structural damage, it would never be as safe as before anyways so a bit pointless to try and repair now.

 

Will probably part the car out when I get time now that the rain has subsided.


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  Reply # 1760630 11-Apr-2017 09:59
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trisik:

 

 

 

I think on the next car, I'll have my parents get full cover and list me as a second driver - works out about $300 cheaper. I really only use my car to/from work so apart from that my parents are usually the one out and about driving it anyways.

 

 

 

 

I used to do that, but you need to be careful esp if you are the main user of the car. They can turn around and say its not really the parents car is it? and deny claims

 

You also don't build up a good driving record and not eligible for no claims discounts etc when you start doing it on your own.

 

 

 

 




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Wannabe Geek


  Reply # 1760635 11-Apr-2017 10:12
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Yeah I understand that but I have 5 years until I can get reasonable cost insurance. Obviously building a good driving record has no effect when you're young, and I'm not keen on paying $300 extra a year just to get a small no claims discount. If I have to claim for an accident where I am at fault, I would lose it anyway (not that I expect to crash anytime soon). 

 

My parents literally take my car out for drives when I'm at work (they don't live far from where I park and have a set of keys) so they are definitely driving it more than me. 

 

I may look into the AMI young drivers insurance, but actually I moved from AMI > AA because of how slowly they processed claims for my friends in multiple instances (kept assigning their cases to people on leave so there was a huge hold up each time -_-)


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