VALRICO, FLORIDA -- I was involved in a MVA with a vehicle insured by Liberty Mutual Insurance Company. I was driving a GMC Yukon XL and the other driver had a Mazda 4 door coupe. It was a two lane road where the posted speed limit was 35mph. The vehicle in front of him stopped to make a left hand turn. He could not stop in time and to avoid hitting the vehicle in front of him, he swerved across the double yellow line and collided with me. The impact initiated at my driver side tire and went the entire length of my vehicle. My vehicle door would open about 10-12 inches because of the impact and there was extensive damage to the rest of my vehicle. The police arrived and after listening to both of our versions of the event and looking at both vehicles, the police officer briefed us both that the other driver caused the accident and is at fault. If the case was to go to court, the police officer could be called as a witness for me.
I notified my insurance company and was told that I could have them repair the damages to my vehicle, pay my deductible, and then they would bill the other insurance company to recover the repairs and my deductible or I could go through their insurance company and not have to worry about the deductible. Hindsight being 20/20, I should have gone that route and would have been much happier. Here is why:
1. Liberty Mutual (LM) is requiring me to pay for a portion of a brand new tire for my vehicle because my vehicle has 24k miles on it. Their stance is that since the tire they are putting on my vehicle is in better condition that the one they are having to replace, I should share the cost.
2. I have spoken at length and waited on hold for a grand total of 218 minutes in an attempt to obtain a rental vehicle, get an estimate for my vehicle to be repaired, and to make the insurance company understand that since none of this was my fault, then why am I being inconvenienced.
3. Safety prevailed on this next item. The claims adjustor listed in the estimate for my rim to be repaired. Think about this for a moment, repair a rim that holds a tire on a vehicle that transports my entire family. Repair a rim that has taken an impact from another vehicle? As I cooled off and spoke with the adjustor, he remained firm in his opinion. I was later informed that the rim could not be repaired and they had to put a new one on it.
So, as you read this, think about how you would want to be treated if you are involved in an accident. From this point on, if I am involved in another accident, I will go with my insurance company, pay the deductible, and let them handle the other insurance company.