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Dealing with Insurance after a not at fault accident.

AlexVSII

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Recently I was involved in a minor motor vehicle accident in which I was the not at fault party. A car hit me as they left a parking space and now as a result there is some scratching and dents along the left hand side of my car. Nothing too major, the car is still safe and driveable, but it's major enough it will need to be fixed.

I am fully, comprehensively insured with NRMA for an agreed value of $5,000. The other, at fault driver is insured by AAMI. I have spoken to both insurance companies. AAMI have offered to take the car to one of their "assessment centres" and arrange repairs. This would take "5 to 7 working days" and they will "re imburse me the costs of a hire car" while I do not have my own car. NRMA have also said I can make a not at fault claim through them, and that they "might" be able to assist with providing a hire car for the time my car is off the road. Both I myself and family members have had dealings with NRMA insurance and have found the standard of their repairers to be quite high. I've never dealt with AAMI before so I'm unsure as to the standard of repairs that they do.

I find myself now considering a few key points, being.

1. What are AAMI repairers generally like? Am I likely to get my car "repaired" using bog by by a "dodgy brothers" style operation or do they do professional, high standard repairs?
2. What am I entitled to claim re a hire car while my car is off the road. I am presently working shifts including early starts and late finishes, sometimes well after the last trains have finished for the evening. My own reliable independent transportation is a fairly high priority for me at this time. As I am the not at fault party, can I add reasonable hire car expenses to my claim, even if I do go through NRMA-bearing in mind I am a 21 year old P plate driver so it is likely to cost a fair amount.
3. What is the likelyhood of them just writing the car off. I would prefer the car not be written off, it's a mechanically sound car. If it is written off, what are my options regarding buying it back and "repairing" it, given the damage is superficial and not structural. As I understand NRMA can write the car off without my agreeance but AAMI are somewhat restricted from doing so.

If anyone has had any experience with insurance repairs done through AAMI and wish to share, I would be appreciative.
 

vxcommodore1

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From my experience, when a young bloke backed in to my WH statesman, he was with AAMI, and i went through all their crap. But it was definitely worth it, went to their approved repairers and it turned out perfectly. I was really, really happy with there work and the amount of time it took.
 

acarmody

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I would be more inclined to go through your insurance company. They are more likely to not give a crap about the repair cost since they will just get it back from AAMI.

As for hire car, I think most insurers have a $30/day allowance for a hire car. I personally would NEVER hire a car without the excess reduction, so good luck finding a hire car for less than $30/day. NRMA should still be able to reclaim the $30/day from AAMI. But I believe you have to pay up front and they will reimburse you. Check with the insurers.

I'm not sure how it would work but I don't think NRMA would write a car off if the repairs are over $5000 (doesn't sound like it), as they would loose a customer but have nothing to gain. AAMI just want to spend the least money.

Also ask NRMA if you can pick your own repairer.
 

uniacidz

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Hire car
You really need to speak to your insurer.

As far as i know, only place in Sydney for hire car for a p-plater, and has to be a green p-plater os No Birds in Kings Cross.
Thrifty did not want to know me, nor budget when i was on P Plates

Speak to your insurer, but somehow one of them will have to cover costs and organise a hire car.
State that it is unacceptable and inconvenient that you have to chase it all up etc.

Maybe the repairer has a hire car service or loan cars.

BUT you may encounter much difficulties trying to get a hire car if on P Plates unless the insurance organises it (either yours or AAMI) and all you have to do is pick it up and be on ya way.
I found AAMI had a budget rental partner in the same complex in Taren Point. Dunno if still there
And if AAMI sorts out the hire car, then your insurance policy is transferred over to the hire car automatically (eg excess etc)

Repairs
As for repairs by AAMI, i had a shocker when i was with them and another party reversed into my car. $3800 damage.

If you do not get quotes and go to their service assessment centres, expect the lowest bidding panel shop whom assess your job to get paid the job.

Take photos now, have photos of before.

My damaged car was repaired, unhappy with the results, broke my seat, badges on wrong, panels on wrong, ripples in paint, missing scrivets, headlights not aligned, headlights not secure, scuttle plate damage etc etc.
Took me 3 days of apparent 'we will get someone to call you back' from the assessment centre before I finally got in touch with them to sort out my car to come back and be reassessed by the head of the dept.

He ageed with me completely with my concerns and I even had pictures of before. That is what got me through to get it sorted under Rectification.
Even went past the place a couple random times the boss of assessment centre and was appalled by the level of quality.
He told me they have been officially warned, and if they didnt get their quality of service up to standard, they will lose theor contract.

All up, 6.5 weeks, hire car for free for the rectification and for the whole job as the other party responsible.




NOTE
That was my experience, others have had better experiences of course.
 
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franklinfrog

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Both NRMA and AAMI might have good or dodgy repairers, you really have no idea. They're both good insurance companies, I've dealt with aami a few times when others have crashed into me and they've been really good.

Hire car I dunno, need to read the policies of both insurers.

If the damage is bad enough then it could definitely be a write off. Up to insurance to decide what the cheapest way out is, repair or write off. If written off you can buy it back at auction and repair at your own cost.

I'd just use their aami insurance and hang on for the ride.
 

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put in the claim to your insurer and let them chase the at fault driver to recover costs. that way you get the repairs done at place of your/nrma's choice and if its sub standard repairs you will find redressing in future a lot easier then a insurer you aren't a customer of. when my car got some repairs done I got a hire car at no cost to me. even got a large car as that is what I have/need and a little buzz box wouldn't cut it. I was 29 at the time so not sure if that will wash with the p plate thing but the worst thing they can say is no, worth a shot
 

Calaber

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When you pay to have your car comprehensively insured, it is much wiser and safer to claim through your company when you have a "no-fault" claim. They arrange the repairs and will do all the dirty work of chasing up payment from the other party - you don't have any issues at all in that regard and it's worth taking that route simply because it is less hassle for you. "Even if problems arise getting the money from the other insurer, it's not your problem - it's your insurer's.

As stated, all insurers have their good and not so good repairers but I think the NRMA might have a better reputation in that regard than AAMI, who tend to be a bit of a budget insurer and will take short cuts to reduce their costs.

I've had a few claims whilst insured with NRMA and they were always prompt and efficient. No experience with AAMI, and I think I'm thankful for that fact.

If your coverage includes allowance for a hire car as well, why not use it? They will invoice AAMI for all their costs and AAMI have obviously accepted responsibility for the damage and costs.

Regarding your repair options. NRMA will assess the car and determine if it is a write-off and offer you it's full insured value, with no loss of excess or increase in premium. You might (I did with one claim) have the option of being paid the assessed value of the damage (provided it doesn't exceed a certain percentage of the car's insured value) to get it repaired and keep the car, but you won't be able to re-insure it with NRMA unless you get it fixed yourself.

For example, I had a 1987 Camira wagon that was insured for $5500 and sustained severe hail damage. The repair was assessed at just over half the insured value so the NRMA said they would write the car off, even though it was still perfectly legal and drivable (it just looked like ten footballers had a dance on the roof and bonnet with their boots on). They gave me the option of keeping the car and receiving $2700 to cover the cost of repairs. I could keep the car but they would not insure it if I took the money. I let them write it off, though it did cost me the excess on that occasion.
 

Astranomical

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I second Calaber...never had to file a claim with NRMA (touch wood), but 3 years ago I was hit by an old fart in a Hilux who tried to overtake me while I was turning right, I went through RACQ (my insurer) and they determined the other driver was at fault and recovered the money through his insurer. Car went off to the panelbeaters to get a new drivers door and front quarter panel and two new rims, and came back to me as good as new. Since moving to NSW I'm now with NRMA and assume that if I were to have another not at fault prang, that my experience would be the same.
 
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