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  1. #1
    Crispy Member ahsposo's Avatar
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    Foo Advice Sought: Parking Lot Collision Damage Ethics

    My wife was attempting to park at the grocery store last week. Crowded lot with only a few slots available. She chose to try a space partially encroached upon by an old beat up '93 Toyota 4Runner and she caught the trucks driverside rear bumper with her bumper.



    (Taken yesterday on a crappy cell phone, sorry about the quality.)

    She wrote a note with her cell and home phone and left it under the wiper then went into the store and had the owner paged and after awhile (she was in the checkout lane) the owner shows up.

    They went out to look at the damage and at the time the owner says not to worry about it. Now this car is pretty beat up already, the front bumper is a shallow "V" from some previous encounter with a pole, the other side of the rear bumper is pushed way in, there are numerous dents and scratches. Bluebook trade-in value on one of these in fair condition is $575.

    Yesterday we get a phone call and now the person wants to get an estimate for the repair of the rear bumper and wants us to pay the amount the repair would cost to them in cash.

    I met with the person and was prepared to offer them $200 in compensation for the damage to the vehicle. Never had a chance to offer the amount I thought was a generous compensation for the damage to the car. This person says that they're going to get two estimates and I'll pay the amount of the lower.

    I replied no, I'll pay that amount to the repair shop for a repair.

    Am I wrong? I am not going to have that old car used as a profit center.

    I told them if they don't want the vehicle repaired and they want money I'll meet them in court.

    What do you say?
    Quote Originally Posted by toddles View Post
    If I gotta look up words, it's not worth my time.

  2. #2
    Galveston County Texas 10 Wheels's Avatar
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    Tell them you will only deal with Their Insurance Agent.
    [SIZE=1][B]What I like about Texas[/B]
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  3. #3
    Senior Member Michigander's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 10 Wheels View Post
    Tell them you will only deal with Their Insurance Agent.
    That, or fix it for them with a junkyard/ebay piece if you have the skill, because luckily it looks like repainting won't be required.
    Bring back the Sig Test!


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  4. #4
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    I would think if the car isnít collateral for a loan then getting the repair done or keeping the value of the damage is their choice. I would also think if the owner has comprehensive insurance their insurance company would want it repaired so as not to have the damage valued again on a future accident.

    I would photograph the pre-existing damage and also talk to the repair shop with the lowest bid about what percentage to deduct for it and negotiate that into what I would payÖ..or let your insurance do that for you if you want to submit it.

  5. #5
    Crispy Member ahsposo's Avatar
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    Let me make this clear.

    The owner of the vehicle is NOT interested in a repair.

    They want money. As I said I was ready to give them up to $200 in cash on the spot for a signed receipt but I never even had the opportunity to make my first offer and negotiate from there. When they told me they wanted the price of a repair in cash to them I decided I wasn't playing that. If I'm spending the price of a repair it gets repaired.

    I will do that up to $600 and then I'll take it to court to total it and take possession.

    BTW, I did speak with my insurance agent about this. The take away advice he gave me I'll share is this: If anybody had been in the vehicle, no matter how slight the bump, file a claim. The potential for whiplash or other physical damage claim is not want you want to deal with, leave that to the insurance company.
    Quote Originally Posted by toddles View Post
    If I gotta look up words, it's not worth my time.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Astrozombie's Avatar
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    Man people are so petty, I was like "cool they are giving a reasonable response for a POS car that they're driving" Aint no way they should be getting almost half of what the thing is worth for a bumper!
    And sure enough they do the switcharoo! They'll be wearing a neck brace next?

    Just the other day I saw a POS 1990s IDK what hit the back of a truck, truck was fine but the car had its front bashed in....I wonder if that guy ends up trying to get money to fix it even when it was his fault for tailgating *smh*

    Wouldn't even bother getting it fixed, those old Toyota's could take a lot of abuse anyway...
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  7. #7
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    Agreed with 10wheels, only talk to their insurance agent, otherwise they'll just take the cash and not use it on the car.

    You could also pick them up a new bumper at a junkyard, those are fairly common. Or you could offer to buy it, they are great cars.

  8. #8
    Super Moderator no1mad's Avatar
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    Ied...
    Last edited by no1mad; 11-16-13 at 08:07 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by Cyril View Post
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  9. #9
    Senior Member himespau's Avatar
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    Huh, don't know what the best solution is.
    Punctuation is important. It's the difference between "I helped my uncle, Jack, off a horse" and "I helped my uncle Jack off a horse"


  10. #10
    bill nyecycles the sci guy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 10 Wheels View Post
    Tell them you will only deal with Their Insurance Agent.
    this. and only this.

    bet you they don't have insurance.
    Twitter@theSurlyBiker

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by ahsposo View Post
    When they told me they wanted the price of a repair in cash to them I decided I wasn't playing that. If I'm spending the price of a repair it gets repaired.
    That seems a little self-righteous considering your wife damaged their car and they may be right to want the monetary value of the damage instead of repairing it. Maybe through frustration your thinking the worst about them only puts you in the same place and isn't the right conduct (regardless of whether they have insurance) that I assume ethical in your original title refers to.

    Running it through your insurance takes you out of it.
    Last edited by clemsongirl; 11-17-13 at 02:35 AM.

  12. #12
    Crispy Member ahsposo's Avatar
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    Yeah, but running through my insurance will, in the long run, be more expensive than just buying the truck.

    I may offer to buy the vehicle for trade in value and junk it.

    But you are correct about the ethical part. I truly want to compensate them for the damage to the vehicle but I don't want to be taken advantage of. There's my dilemma.
    Quote Originally Posted by toddles View Post
    If I gotta look up words, it's not worth my time.

  13. #13
    Senior Member JonnyHK's Avatar
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    Legally you should pay the quoted price to 'make good' their damage, but if they chose to not do the work and pocket the money there isn't much I think you can do about it.

    Morally I'd be annoyed with this and would only offer a smaller payment.

    Make your offer and stick to it. Point out the ramifications (court action, higher costs for everyone, more delay) if the reject it. They might take the lower figure and run...

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