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Got in a fender bender accident, now what?

angelic

TRIBE Member
My friend had a car accident today with his cousin's jeep and is perplexed about what to do. I'm not sure if he has any options, but was wondering if anyone else had any ideas/knowledge to share...

He says: I bumped into the person behind me when I backed up because I tried to make an amber light but it turned red. I was sticking into traffic so I backed up, didn't look in my mirrors, and bent their bumper so it rubbed up against their wheel. They had to get it towed and...

- they got my name and my cousins insurance info (cousin's vehicle)
- my cousin un-insured her vehicle and the woman I bumped into made a police report and is trying to claim insurance
- the woman has a witness, her husband, who was with her; I was alone
- I called the woman i had a fender bender with to try to make arrangements to settle costs without insurance, but she had already made the police report and contacted her insurance company
- now she could end up adding on extra costs and I'll have to pay alot more money than the actual damage, I have to pay the insurance amount?
- I didn't sign anything

I dunno... I can't think of any way to lie your way out of this one! :confused:
 

Rataxès

TRIBE Member
angelic said:
to settle costs without insurance, but she had already made the police report and contacted her insurance company
Well, due to no fault insurance, the woman's claim will impact her insurance rates (even if she is not at fault, she has a claim on file). I would try to persuade her to settle outside of insurance if the repair cost is reasonable, otherwise you're just going to have to bite it. In any case, if she's already reported the accident to her insurance company, it may be too late.
 

DeepSix

TRIBE Promoter
OK, so to clarify:

a) it's not the person's (your friend's) vehicle - it's his cousin's. (Here after called "YOU" for the sake of brevity)
b) the vehicle itself is uninsured - the cousin has no insurance.
c) the "victim" already made a police report - the police know that your friend's cousin's Jeep was uninsured and on the road.

Here's my not-a-lawyer-but-heavy-ingrained-in-the-system view:

In normal cases, where the driver of the vehicle is a named driver on the insurance policy what normally happens IIRC is that the "victim" makes a claim to her carrier. Her carrier may then seek compensation from your carrier through what is called "Transfer of Loss" due to the fact that you were at fault. ("No fault insurance" is a misnomer, really - fault is always assigned to someone; no fault was just intended to keep the customer dealing with their own chosen service provider as opposed to dealing in a completely adversarial manner with the 3rd party carrier).

In cases like that, you would pay your premium and your insurance would cover the remainder of the damages pretty much. And everyone's insurance rate would magically increase.

In this case, however, since there is no other insurance company, there is an Unisured Motorist portion that is covered when you buy an insurance policy and the losses are recouped from the Motor Vehicle Accident Claims (MVAC) fund. I found some info and stuck it below.

This next part I'm iffy on...If the loss exceeds what is covered, the victim may actually be able to go after the personal assets of either the owner of the vehicle (who should not have had it on the road uninsured) and/or the driver (who should not have been driving an uninsured vehicle / may have been driving without permission / etc.). Either way, it may not be good. And expect a ticket from the police for driving without insurance may be issued as well...

My advice: Call a lawyer who specializes in traffic law or one of those ex-copper type places. Even just to see what your options are and what might or might not happen - what limit the victim can take this to may be very important.

If it was truly just a fender bender and no personal injury was cause, both your friend and his cousin should count their lucky stars, go to church more often and sacrifice a goat or two. Once it gets into body injury or personal loss the costs can be astronomical.

---

From www.allstate.ca

"Uninsured Automobile Coverage
This section offers financial protection from an uninsured or unidentified vehicle. It pays for amounts related to bodily injury and death caused by an at-fault uninsured driver or an unidentified vehicle.

If you are in such an accident and have a claim, your own insurance company pays your claim up to the provincial minimum liability amount of $200,000 only. The insurance company is governed by the guidelines of this coverage in how they pay the claim.

If you purchase the Family Protection Coverage(OPCF 44R), even if your claim is more than $200,000, your insurance company will pay the full amount up to your own liability limit. This is an important reason to choose a Liability Limit that satisfies your own family's needs.

This section also protects your vehicle against an identified but uninsured vehicle. The amount paid is subject to a maximum limit of $25,000 less your deductible. If an accident causes both physical damage to your vehicle and bodily injury, the amount paid may be further reduced, since there is an upper limit of $200,000.

No coverage is provided under this section for damage to your vehicle if the driver is unidentified. You may make a claim under the collision coverage section of your policy."

"Example of an accident in Ontario with an underinsured driver:
Jane is in an accident with John and John is at-fault. Jane's claim totals $300,000, but John's liability limit is the Provincial minimum of $200,000. Since Jane's own liability limit is $500,000 and she had purchased Family Protection Coverage, her insurance company pays the difference between Jane's claim and John's liability limit. Jane receives $200,000 from John and the remaining $100,000 from her own insurance company to pay her claim of $300,000."

Example of an accident in Ontario with an uninsured driver:
Michael is in an accident with Lisa, where Lisa is at-fault. Lisa's insurance policy had expired, so she was driving without insurance. Michael's claim totals $500,000. The Uninsured Motorist Coverage pays Michael the Provincial minimum liability of $200,000. Since Michael's own Liability limit is $1,000,000 and he had purchased the Family Protection Coverage, his own insurance company pays Michael the remaining $300,000."

check also: http://www.ontarioinsurance.com/english/insurance/auto/mvacf/suinguninsuredmotorist.asp

re: fines from http://www.waddellinsurance.com/html/whatsnew/whatsnew.asp

"Please DO NOT drive without car insurance
All motorists in Ontario are legally required to have car insurance. Fines for convictions for driving without insurance are as follows:

1. For a first conviction, the minimum fine is $5,000 and the maximum is $25,000;
2. For each subsequent conviction, the minimum fine becomes $10,000 and the maximum becomes $50,000.

Uninsured car owners cannot sue for damage to their cars even when they are not at fault for an accident that occurs in Ontario.

Insurance companies can sue an uninsured driver when that driver is at fault to any degree for the accident.

Driving without insurance is against the law; it could be financially devastating; and it's irresponsible. Please do not drive without valid insurance coverage."
 

danielablau

TRIBE Promoter
I only skimmed the previous posts but heres the deal, no fault insurance has nothing to do with rates going up, we live in a new set of circumstances, insurance rates only go up with fault, that being said if you really want to be an asshole then report it because you can say she rear ended you.......according to the fault determination rules the ins. companies go by, she would be at fault, her husband is not a credible witness, just hope she doesnt have any otehr independant witnesses. The second thing is that if you tell the truth that you were at fault your buddy will have his insurance go up unless you tell your insurance company to write a letter to his stating that you are accepting the fault in this accident........the call is yours.... you can lie and i'm 99% sure you'd get away with it.......
 
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danielablau

TRIBE Promoter
ok so my co-worker is telling me that if they argue that you hit them then they will investigate and appearantly they can find out by impact, any cameras in the vincinity etc..........so i guess i'm wrong......just try to settle out of court
 

lucky1

TRIBE Member
no insureance you are looking at a min $2000 fine as per the Mandatory Insurance act in Ontario. Also they could take on some other Highway traffic Act Offences.. such as fail to stop, careless driving.. whatever.. I wasn't there I don't know what happened. Contact a lawyer. Perhaps you can settle out of court.
 

danielablau

TRIBE Promoter
Insurance companies these days are accepting that you will settle without the involvment of them, however if they ahve already started the work on teh car or if the ppl are claimin injuries then you are out of luck
 

lucky1

TRIBE Member
PM my sister.... She was a broker and knows insurance (auto especially) really well...

Jocelyn Dee
 
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danielablau

TRIBE Promoter
its ok to drive without insurance, as long as the car is insured adn you have consent by the owner to drive it........

I would call the person and try to pay for the damages to their car, if they are injured or they are claiming injury you are screwed.....that being said, call them and try to see if they will let you pay for the damages and get them to get 3 quotes.
 

kyfe

TRIBE Member
ok there is some good advice above aside from those suggesting you commit fraud.

1st off No fault simply means that you are paid out by your own insurer and they subrogate after the fact witht he AT fault insureds company.

2. Do not lie, if you lie I guarantee you are more likely to get caught than get a favorable result. This is call fraud and not only will yur claim be denyed but it will also be reported witht he IBC and good luck trying to find regular market insurance over the next 10 years.

3. Does your cousin have insurance? Do you have insurance? according to what you wrote above you implied that your cousin doesn't have insurance. Now there are 2 problems with this A. the registered owner of the vehicle has no insurance which is mandatory by law in Canada, so the vehicle cannot be driven. B. if you do have insurance and try to take responsibility for the accident since you are not the registered owner and the new vehicle (your cousins) was not added to the policy this would constitute a material change in risk and since you did not added the vehicle onto your policy prior to driving it they will most likely deny the claim. At best they may payout the 3rd party but deny any claim on your vehicle and terminate your policy for material change. Once again good luck finding insurance at anything close to a reasonable rate.

4. As for rates going up, the 3rd party has already reported the claim so once it's reported there is no going back. Your policy states any incident involving damage to the vehicle should be reported within a reasonable timeframe, it's an obligation of any insured driving in Canada.

Having said that many people do try to settle out of pocket and there is nothing wrong with that, what I do see alot of people do in this situation is either take their sweet old time paying the other party or the other party even after payout persues a claim anyway meaning your insurer will be notified of the accident from the 3rd parties insurer and they will rate you as being at- Fault.

5. If your cousin is uninsured you'll both be facing fines for doing so, if this is the case you need to wrap your head around the fact that you broke the law and rightfully you should be punished.

Lastly don't forget driving is a privledge, not a right. If you cannot afford the necesseties to drive your vehicle then you shouldn't be driving. You'd be suprised at home many drivers on the road are not insured, it's somewhere between 10-25%

Anyway if you have other questions feel free to PM me, if your friend/cousin has no insurance please don't bother and get yourself a lawyer instead.

Kyfe
 

djfear

TRIBE Member
When I nearly got smoked by a salt dump truck a few weeks ago, he cleanly took off my bumper. Original estimate was about $2100, but it ended up being $1500. Just so you know what type of damage you're looking at.
 

danielablau

TRIBE Promoter
Kyfe, I must say you put a lot of effort into that post.......more effort then I had..........

as for advice............listen to kyfe.....
 
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Bean

TRIBE Member
joey said:
if theyve already contacted their insurance company its too late...
not necessarily!

i was rear ended a few years ago and made the choice to settle out of insurance with the guy who hit me. he began waffling on paying, so I filed a police report at a collision reporting centre and the information about the accident was sent to both of our respective insurance companies.

he quickly changed his mind . . . my vehicle was fixed and he paid for it. a few days later, my insurance company calls me to follow up on the claim submitted to them by the collision reporting centre. i informed them that the car was fixed and i didn't want to proceed with the claim. they cancelled the claim.

i recognize that the circumstances of my accident are different than the ones presented. i merely wanted to highlight that filing a police report does not necessarily mean that you're tied into have the vechicle(s) fixed through insurance.
 

Vincent Vega

TRIBE Member
angelic said:
My friend had a car accident today with his cousin's jeep and is perplexed about what to do.
Can we assume that your friend doesn't have insurance either? If he does and is perplexed as you say, then wouldn't HIS insurance company be a much better place from which to get info than here? He should probably contact them no?

If, however, he did NOT have insurance......then what can one say about an uninsured driver, driving an uninsured vehicle, reversing into another car without looking in his mirrors?
 
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kyfe

TRIBE Member
danielablau said:
Kyfe, I must say you put a lot of effort into that post.......more effort then I had..........

as for advice............listen to kyfe.....
Thanks, I like educating those about insurance because there are alot of misconceptions about the industry. Most of the horror stories you hear are because of situations like this and people bitching about something that was totally within their own control.

I heard a girl complain because she had an At fault accident and go a tow to the garage which cost her $200. Her insurance company she was told they wouldn't cover the tow or the damage. The chick complained to no end but if she had the proper coverage (collision) the tow would have been covered as well as her damage to the vehicle.

It's all about education, something my industry doesn't do very well and something clients don't take a great enought interest in.
 

Blue Meanies

TRIBE Member
Vincent Vega said:
If, however, he did NOT have insurance......then what can one say about an uninsured driver, driving an uninsured vehicle, reversing into another car without looking in his mirrors?
Burn...?
 

quantumize

TRIBE Member
i dont want to sidetrack this thread, but I wanted to say that I think its horrible that we live in a province where insurance is so expensive that there are upwards of 25% of drivers on the road without it.

People cant afford to insure vehicles, and people are terrified of filing claims because they are worried insurance their insurance rates will go up. this is a big problem, and the idea of non-insured drivers on the road scares the hell out of me, especially in the spring/summer when i ride a bike.
 
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danielablau

TRIBE Promoter
quantumize, we are paying more because fraud is huge out there, now with the new legislation for accident benefits I can only see things getting worse with everything going to mediation/arbitration or to court......its gonna get worse........if you think we have it bad here, think about the states where in a lot of states the minimum liability coverage is $40,000.00........imagine a day in the hospital from an accident you werent at fault for and you run out of insurance money and its likely that person doesnt have any money to sue for.........and youa re up shits creek..........at least in canada we have no fault for meds and higher liability coverage.......
 

jocelyn dee

TRIBE Promoter
danielablau said:
its ok to drive without insurance, as long as the car is insured adn you have consent by the owner to drive it........

I would call the person and try to pay for the damages to their car, if they are injured or they are claiming injury you are screwed.....that being said, call them and try to see if they will let you pay for the damages and get them to get 3 quotes.
hmmm - where to begin...

Generally, the owner of the vehicle buys insurance for the vehicle and the policy is in his name.

If the owner of the vehicle lends the vehicle to another person then the insurance follows the vehicle. (So technically the other driver is covered under the owner's policy if driving with permission of the owner.)

In this case, it seems the owner does not have insurance. Do you (the driver at the time of the accident) have your own vehicle/insurance? Are you listed as the secondary driver on another policy (mom's/dad's/lover's)?

I you are listed on another insurance policy, it may extend some coverage (in certain cases)? But you would have to call your insurer to see (especially if you were unaware at the time of the accident that the vehicle you were driving was uninsured).

In this situation, the victim (who YOU hit) was simply stopped at an intersection and you backed into her. You are probably at fault but it will be up to the claims adjuster to determine it for sure. The adjusters determine fault using legislation called fault determination rules.

for info about fault determination rules:
http://www.e-laws.gov.on.ca/DBLaws/Regs/English/900668_e.htm

If the lady's car needed towing, then she's probably already called her insurance so it will be hard for her to stop the claim. Also, if she knows you were uninsured, she probably won't want to settle "under the table" because if you can't pay for insurance, how can you pay repair costs for her car.

Also, no-fault insurance is a very misunderstood term. Basically, if you are determined to be 100% at fault, then the lady is 100% not-at-fault. So her rates won't go up even if her insurance pays to fix her car.

FYI: Even if you settle "under the table" she could still turn around and put in a claim for injuries or damage and you would still get charged (the time period to make injury claims is 2yrs).

FYI: Driving without insurance is a criminal offence with a fine of at least $2000. If you have a driving without insurance conviction on your record (or any other criminal charge like DUI) you will probably have a hard time buying insurance in the future
 

jocelyn dee

TRIBE Promoter
PS: If I was hit by an uninsured driver and the accident was not my fault I would probably claim it no matter how much it cost or whether he/she offered to pay. I think that driving without insurance is highly irresponsible.
 

Ditto Much

TRIBE Member
danielablau said:
quantumize, we are paying more because fraud is huge out there, now with the new legislation for accident benefits I can only see things getting worse with everything going to mediation/arbitration or to court......its gonna get worse........if you think we have it bad here, think about the states where in a lot of states the minimum liability coverage is $40,000.00........imagine a day in the hospital from an accident you werent at fault for and you run out of insurance money and its likely that person doesnt have any money to sue for.........and youa re up shits creek..........at least in canada we have no fault for meds and higher liability coverage.......
yes however insuring a porsche 928 costs $47 a month down here in Nebraska, insuring my VW Cabrio with similar coverage in Toronto was running me $200 a month. I'll tell you it has nothing to do with the speed, safety or cost of the vehicle, the Canadian insurance industry is a cash cow that should be put under.

Not to pick on insurance but its about time to clamp down on the industry. If I'm required to have the product by law to utilize roads paid for by public taxes the government should set the rates and the insurance industry should learn to make it work at a much more reasonable rate.
 
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