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Help with Insurance Claim SC on E30 M-Tech

Discussion in 'Buy, Lease, Finance & Insurance' started by 2furiousd, Oct 31, 2012.

    • Member

    2furiousd

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    Can anyone give me some legal advise, for SC? I'm trying to determine an accurate value. The insurance company at fault is really jacking me around. It is claimed to be a total loss. Police report found other totally at fault, the insurance company wants me to assume 20% responsibility. Basically I told them they are high on dope, in the nicest way. Note the Honda and the driver in the background; they took an illegal left turn, over double yellow, and over a turn lane for my side of traffic, then failed to yield, just to turn into a check cashing establishment.

    559596_10151464002487222_1228783887_n.jpg

    I've been pulling together resorces, Ebay has the same exact car up on auction now, and I have found several others like it for sale, one on Hemmings. I also have a reciept for what I paid for the car, reciepts for new top, Bilsteins, HR springs, timing belt service, new tires, labor, etc... most done in the last year +/-. The rest of the car is an original 115k car with great paint, body and good interior, miles supported by a CarFax.

    My real issue is that they faxed me "their offer", which they want me to assume 20% fault, when I am 0% fault. They told me that's their offer, take it or leave it. They want me to sign it and fax it back. There is NO dollar amount mentioned. Well, Im not signing anything without a dollar amount, and Im not agreeing to this because Im 0% at fault, as stated by myself, the witness, and on the police report.

    They tried to explain to me that I didn't apply brakes. I did apply brakes, so much so that the brake lights are stuck on, and I had to disconnect the battery to turn them off; I stated this fact to them. Then when that theory backfired on the adjustor, they said I was traveling faster than the 25 mph, which to them explains why the other car spun around. Fact is, I was traveling the speed that I stated, and the other car wasn't standing still when it crossed in front of me. I acually pulled up videos showing a controlled 25 mph t-bone on youtube showing what carnage follows that kind of impact, on a still car.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LwdNa5Dc0Jo
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VeKWQAccJEQ&feature=relmfu
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8e8TpsUU4GY&feature=relmfu

    This experience could have been so much easier on both. This is such a small claim, in the scheme of things. Property damage is my biggest concern. Medical bills I paid for out of pocket, they are very low so far. This is just so taxing on me personally, and it's been dragging on for almost a month now; just over property damage. I have done all the leg work for the other insurance company or it would have gotten this far.

    Any help, or advise is greatly appreciated.
    • Member

    MGarrison

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    Unfortunately, I've found before, that's what some insurance adjusters are paid to do - not really make things right for all parties involved, but instead be a nasty, hard-core, p.i.t.a., s.o.b. that harasses, harangues, and needles you until you lose patience, get worn down, and give in; their real job is just to make sure as little money gets paid out as possible, and therefore, there is as little loss as possible to the insurance company.. Don't be afraid to at least threaten lawsuits and getting a lawyer involved, the last thing they want, I would suspect, is even MORE expense; don't expect the claims adjuster to cower because you threaten a lawsuit, expect a nasty response - the intent is to bully you out of actually pursuing legal action. Anything they can bamboozle you into agreeing to, means less cost to them (and, you possibly legally forfeiting your ability to your claim(s) - never agree or admit to anything written or verbally, with the claims adjuster, you're not at fault). These are age-old tactics, you're experiencing the same thing I did 30 years ago. In addition to getting a lawyer involved, you can report the insurance company to your state's Attorney General's office (& state consumer's affairs agency, if there is one) for their business practices (they probably wouldn't want that, even if it doesn't go anyplace), file complaints with the Better Business Bureau, and, leave feedback everyplace you can on appropriate internet websites about your negative experience, and suggesting avoiding them like the plague.

    Go find the body shop you want to fix the car, and get the repair estimate. Make sure it's a good, thoroughly done estimate, with the quality of replacement parts you want, including what's been modded. All you have to show and document is what you have, the value, and why the value is what you say. Don't buy into their attempting to pettifog the issue, they can say anything they want, but it's all bogus, the claims adjuster wasn't in the accident and didn't witness it and can only prove what's in the police report, all that matters is that the police report cites the other person as 100% at fault, and not you - and, you didn't receive any ticket, corroborating that you have no fault in the incident. If things go in front of a judge, you win, the insurance company is contractually obligated to pay - the question becomes, how much. That's where state laws can get involved, the discussion of brand new replacement parts being worth more than the original parts that were on the car, and so on.

    You're under no obligation to argue with these people about the details of what's happened - that's done and past. If they won't agree to pay to fix your car right, the next step is legal action and reports to the AG and BBB. Oh - the reason you want a _really_ thorough estimate, once you accept their payment, you'd likely have as much luck getting blood out of a turnip as getting another cent out of the insurance company, so if actual repair costs run above whatever you get, that's out of pocket for you. Keep in mind that it's likely that from the insurance company's perspective, this isn't about what happened, you, or your car, it's war, and it's about money. You'll reduce your stress level a bit if you don't take it personally, even as frustrating and inconvenient as this kind of stonewalling and stalling is. And, yes, since unfortunately it is war, the burden's going to be on you to be providing all documentation and valuations, I'd expect the extent they're going to is looking at their own references specifying the cheapest parts possible, and if it ain't in their catalogue, it ain't gonna be in their reimbursement offer.
    • Member

    MGarrison

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    Although not terribly relevant, an aside bit of technicality is that, depending on how your rolling tire diameter compares to the rolling diameter of the oem wheel/tire combination (typically 195/65-14, if memory serves), your _actual_ speed might be different than you're thinking it was. If your wheel/tire combination has a smaller rolling diameter, your speedometer would read higher compared to the oem setup, and BMW speedometers of that era are typically a bit optimistic, meaning that a speedo-indicated 25mph would actually be less. A larger rolling diameter would make the speedo read low, meaning your actual speed is closer to the speedo-indicated speed, or maybe higher. No point in discussing that with the claims adjuster, as that just gives another avenue to sidetrack the issue further.
    • Member

    MGarrison

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    BTW, from your pic, I'm guessing you need two front fenders, a hood, hood emblem, both headlight buckets (headlights look unbroken?), maybe kidney and front plastic grilles, the front spoiler/bumper cover (that might take some doing, I think someplace makes replica M-Tech parts, finding an original replacement seems like it might be a challenge), probably bumper shocks (at least), perhaps front valance pieces that are hidden by the spoiler, possibly oil cooler and lines, possibly a/c condenser/fan and lines (and freon, and drying canister, and re-charging the a/c system), maybe radiator and/or fan, and, anything else front-end wise that may have gotten bent or busted (signal lights/markers, fender liners, etc). Look at realoem.com diagrams to get an idea. Hopefully things aren't so badly banged up you need frame/body straightening, or getting into the front suspension/shocktowers, front subframe, or steering parts. Insurance might not cover it, but might be a good idea to replace motor and transmission mounts as a precaution.

    http://www.schmiedmann.com/3_series/E30/Equipment_-_accesories/Equipment-styling_-_outside/page1.htm#2869
    • Member

    MGarrison

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    Come to think of it, someplace in the gaggle of websites by your state or state's attorney general's office, I'd think you might find a faq or some-such detailing your rights and obligations in dealing with insurance companies, claims adjusting, and insurance claims. Your own insurance agent might be a person to ask as well how to deal with this situation - preferable of course for the other insurance company to pay for repairs than you filing a claim with your own company.

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