Insurance fun-time update!

posted in People, Work on Oct 4, 2010

So it has been a whopping two weeks since I had had that most awesome car accident. How time flies when you are waiting on the insurance company to do…anything. TIME FOR A STORY!

By now you have seen all the pictures; there was a four car pile-up at rush hour. Outside of there simply being a multitude of cars, the reason behind the whole event was rather unordinary. Someone just didn’t stop in time.

I pulled my car over to the side of the road, as did the person who was pushed into me. Hazard lights went on, pro-style. As I exited the vehicle, I could see the line of caos that went from my car to the one that originated the incident. To be honest, there was little overall damage to the vehicles that were hit, the first car taking the brunt of the force. It’s front end got rocked is what I am trying to say.
As I looked over this site, I noticed that a friendly hobo had begun directing traffc. Why that happened I have no idea, but that’s what he did. When you are a hobo, why not?

The police and a sweet firetruck arrived not long after, and the officers on duty began speaking to all who were involved. This is where the whole process started to break down.

After roughly twenty minutes, the officers had all the information from every party. One of them walked over to me and handed me a slip of paper with the insured’s insurance company, phone number, and case number.

“I will also need the person’s account number,” I said.
“No, this will be fine,” came the reply.
“I would like their account number, otherwise we can’t file a claim.”
“You guys are good to go. That case number will have all you need on it.”

Reluctantly, and against my better judgment, I accepted this as an answer, and in an effort to get my car out of the way of the hundred angry people behind us, went home, angry at myself for not being more persistant.

I arrived back at the homestead, and called up the insurance company. As I had already known, I didn’t have enough information to file the claim, so I would have to wait. Thereafter, I spoke with the Oklahoma City PD, but they didn’t have the incident report in yet, and wouldn’t have it until the next day or possibly two days. Awesome.

Tuesday (the next day) comes and I take off work because sometimes that’s the best thing ever, and speak again to the city. They have it! Well, that wasn’t too hard. I rather lucked out that they had it so fast, I was told. It usually doesn’t happen at such a rapid and blistering speed.

I went and returned from the police station with the case file in hand, ready to claim it up. I called, gave the insured’s information, and was told a claim had already been started. They didn’t need any of the information that I spent all of $2.00 to get copied. Those jerks.

“An adjuster will call you in the next couple of days,” the person said.
“That sounds about right,” I replied.

And so the days went by.

“Hello. Yes; I am calling from insurance company. We will have someone from this other company get in touch with you about setting up an appointment for someone to do an estimate on your vehicle.”
“That’s…weird.”
“Indeed!”

So I waited again for a call from another person. Luckily that only took one day. By this time it was Friday.

“Hi, I am the person from the other company that was supposed to call you and I did!”
“Good job at your job!”
“I know, right! Anyhow, let’s get down to business. What is your name?”

I give him all the information that he asks for. The standard stuff.

“Wait, so YOU own the white car?”
“Yep. That is what I just told you.”
“That’s weird. The other guy that I talked to earlier said he owned it.”
“Yeah, that IS weird. I can, however, guarantee that it is my car. I am looking at it right now.”
“HMMMMMMM…I will have to call the adjuster and see about this and then call you back.”
“Seriously?”
“Yeah.”
“Well, alright then.”

We parted ways, that person and me, in our amazing telephone conversation. Then he called back.

“Well, I couldn’t get ahold of the adjuster, so I will go ahead and just make the change.”
“You do that; it sounds like a smashing idea. My car associated with my name, you say? CAPITAL!”
“Indeed! I will send this out to an appraiser who will get in touch with you within two business days. ”

Again, our conversation was over.

THEN IT WAS MONDAY. I eagerly awaited a phone call from this new guy – whose name was Cliff, by the way – at work. And then I waited some more. Cliff had decided that Monday was not the day to call this fellow.

TUESDAY. No Cliff. I was beginning to expect the worst. What had happened to Cliff? Had Cliff been in a car accident on the way to call me about MY car accident?! Say it ain’t so, Cliff; SAY IT AIN’T SO!

I called the guy at company #2 back.

“So…I, um, haven’t heard from our friend Cliff.”
“That’s…weird. And you say you own the white car in the accident?”
“…Yes. I am sitting in it right now, as a matter of fact. I have owned it for nearly ten years now, isn’t that something!”
“It is, it is. HMMMMM…it says in my notes here that Cliff has been re-assigned, and will not, in fact, be working on your vehicle.”
“That is valuable information to know, guy.”
“We like to do our best at company #2.”
“I can see that.”
“Since Cliff will not be able to help you with your issue, let me go ahead and assign another person to it.”
“That does sound like it would be the next course of action.”
“Doesn’t it?”

I was told that some other dude would then be handling the case. I really didn’t care at this point, I simply wanted SOMETHING to happen. This phone call happened on a Tuesday. I sat through Wednesday and Thursday without a peep. I called and left a message on Thursday.

FRIDAY. Tried calling again. No answer. Called the supervisor, whose number was listed in the voicemail message of the first guy. No answer. I then got a ring.

“This is company #2 returning your call.”
“Way to go, bro.”
“I know! It’s funny that you left that message on my phone. The second guy said that he called you a ton and you never called back. He even had HIS supervisor call.”
“That IS funny, guy. You may not be able to hear it, but I am laughing. These tears are not from my ongoing frustration, but from ALL THE LAUGHING.”
“I could only imagine.”
“Interestingly enough, I have recieved no calls on my phone in the last week.”
“Is your phone number XXX-XXX-XXXX?”
“That does sound familiar, in fact, it’s the very number that you used to call me back with. I am actually holding the same phone as I did a week ago, if you can believe it.”
“Wait a second! You know last week when we had your file mixed up with the other guy and we didn’t know owned the white car?”
“Would that be the instance where you screwed up my information and I had to wait longer for service?”
“That would be it!”
“Then yes, I remember.”
“Well it turns out that the other guy’s number was still on your part of the claim. That’s our B.”
“That is exceptionally your B.”
“I will just go ahead and change that.”
“You do that.”

This conversation lasted a little while longer. He was, fortunately, able to find someone to come and look at my car. They arrived on Saturday, it took about fifteen minutes, and then she was on her way. She quoted me $100 less than the body shop I took it to did.

As of this writing I am waiting to hear back from the original insurance company. They have to approve the amount and then arrange for payment. I will see if I can get the extra $100, which I am sure will take other few weeks.

The moral of the story is that you should never be rear-ended. Just don’t do it.

And if you haven’t guessed, all of these conversations did not happen exactly as told, but that’s what they sounded like to me.

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  • Getting rear-ended is pretty bad news all around I’d say, yep.

    So have you gotten over that nervousness at stoplights yet? The kind where you can’t take your eyes off the rearview mirror because the guy behind you doesn’t seem to be slowing down fast enough?

    A slightly humorous story:

    A few years back, when I was still driving the Saturn with its Rubbermaid bumpers, I was rear-ended by a Geo Metro. The Geo couldn’t have been going more than 10 MPH when it hit– I didn’t feel much in my car, certainly, and my bumber was dented in a bit by the other car. That’s it. The Geo, unfortunately, was in much worse condition.

    In the Geo, the airbags went off. The front end crumpled and the windows (including the windshield) shattered. One of the tires was punctured.

    The officer who came out to see us did not believe it was only a 10MPH crash– he thought I was trying to help the other drive out. When I showed him my nearly-pristine bumper (after popping the dent back out) he was more OK with it.

    They had to call a tow truck for the Geo, but my Saturn didn’t look like anything had happened at all.

    Moral of the story: Don’t buy a Geo.

  • Garret

    I actually never really got the jitters after having that accident, luckily enough. One of the few things that I learned at the insurance company I worked for is that these things happen to everyone. Everyday you don’t get hit your chances of getting hit just go up. My car also didn’t receive that much damage, so I wasn’t really that worse for wear.

    And I was going to get a Geo! That was totally the next car that I was going to buy!