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Thread: 3rd Party Insurance Claim

  1. #1
    Full Member MadJan's Avatar
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    3rd Party Insurance Claim

    I was in an accident, fault was not on my side. The other driver did not stop at the yield sign and collided into me. I am trying to claim from 3rd party but they are now applying the law of damages and delict, whereby they only pay 60% of the damages. My damages amount to around R35 000.00. They now say that i have to contribute to 40% of the damages as they say that i am liable for 40%. After all of their calculations i am told that they will only pay me R5373.24.
    Can anyone please help shed some light on this, don't i have any rights re this? Sadly i dont have vehicle insurance.

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    Site Caretaker Dave A's Avatar
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    Sounds like they're playing the blame apportioning game. But even then, there certainly seems to be a problem with their maths.

    If you are confident you didn't contribute to the cause of the accident (other than unfortunatley being there), my suggestion:
    Don't sign acceptance of their offer (that's all it is).
    Respond by instructing an attorney to issue summons for the full quantum of your damages against the driver (and/or owner if the vehicle was being used for business) of the other vehicle.
    The trouble with opportunity is it normally comes dressed up as work.

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    Diamond Member AndyD's Avatar
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    I've had four litigation cases in the last 20 years involving insurance companies and their refusal to pay the cost of damages to my vehicles by a third party who's their policy holder. It's the same dance each time, they make some rediculously low offer, I send them the quotations for repairs plus towing plus vehicle hire etc. They refuse to pay that amount because blah blah blah, I instruct my lawyer to deal with it and after the usual paperwork a court case is booked. All of the cases were settled in full and with legal expenses before the court dates arrived.

    I get the impression they just like trying their luck or they play some kinda numbers game because a certain percentage of claimants aren't pissed off enough to drag them into court.

    Tell them to stick their offer where the sun don't shine and send them a lawyers letter.
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    Silver Member KimH's Avatar
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    Third Party claims are absolutely the pits!

    A few years ago my Audi was parked - underground parking in CPT City Central, where I worked,. Somehow in a lot that was at only 30% capacity a woman managed to reverse into my car causing about 15k's worth of damage. She was suitably apologetic and promised to take care of the repair costs personally, well till she received the quote of course. She then referred me to her insurance company - a big name that I will not mention on here for obvious reasons. I weighed up doing a 3rd party claim versus claiming off my insurance, I'm somewhat stubborn and decided that why should someone else's mistake cost me (a) the excess (b) increase in policy and barreled ahead with a third party claim.

    After a month of being messed around by said insurance company (and driving around in a car that I'd only had for 3 months that was damaged) I placed a complaint on Hello Peter, needless to say my third party claim was resolved and a EFT made to my account for the damages within a week.

    It bothers me that in SA we have to go to these lengths in order to get matters resolved, but that is a rant for another day.

    Madjan, 35k is not a small number - try the Hello Peter option (but only if the insurance company is one that responds), if you still do not get a satisfactory outcome, contact an attorney and take it from there.

    And please, as much of a grudge purchase that it is,... get insurance

    Good luck - let us know how it turns out.
    "If at first you don't succeed, do it like your mother told you."

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    I get my ass handed to me every month with my insurance premium, but trust me, it's worth it for the day when you need it.

    Get insurance. One day you'll thank us.

  6. #6
    Full Member MadJan's Avatar
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    Thanks guys i really appreciate the advice. Have any of you heard of this law? "Law of Damanges and Delict"? This is the info i found on the Insurance co's website

    "They will decide what to pay you by applying the Law of Damages and Delict in accordance with which they could attribute a percentage of fault to you whereby offering to pay you less than your actual damage. For example if the other party skipped a stop street colliding with your vehicle, it could be said that you too did not take enough care in trying to avoid the incident, therefore they could offer to pay only 60% of your damage. This could result in a lengthily legal dispute between yourself and the other party’s insurance company"

    In short this is what they had to say via email:
    "Should we have to proceed with this further we will vigorously defend the action.

    We further confirm this being our final correspondence should you not accept our offer. We suggest you seek legal advice from your legal counsel"

    I also called them and pretended to be a new client, they confirmed that they would pay out the 3rd party for damages and that there were no other special laws or clauses that i should know about.

    I also asked that they send me that specific recording, but they obviously wont. Do i stand a chance of getting them to sort this out, also who would pay for all legal expenses incurred?

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    Site Caretaker Dave A's Avatar
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    Starting to sound more and more like SA Eagle...

    Seriously, you're going to wear yourself out trying to engage them yourself.
    Yes, there is the matter of apportionment.
    No, they are not going to make a fair apportionment (if there is a case for it) without being bludgeoned to it.

    You know they're screwing you. And there's only one profession equipped to fix it.

    Hand it over to a lawyer.
    The trouble with opportunity is it normally comes dressed up as work.

  8. #8
    Full Member MadJan's Avatar
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    Thanks Dave,

    I guess i will hand it over to an attorney, cos they really are screwing me over this. I will keep you all updated so lets hold thumbs :-)

  9. #9
    Full Member MadJan's Avatar
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    What if i don't have an independant witness? does it make my case any weaker?

  10. #10
    Site Caretaker Dave A's Avatar
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    It certainly doesn't help not having an independant witness. Just how much of a problem that might be depends on the other evidence.

    Both the parties have to report the accident to the police. What is in those accident reports?
    Where is the damage on the vehicles?
    Who had right of way?
    The trouble with opportunity is it normally comes dressed up as work.

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