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How have you handled accident damage (as in I'm looking for other's experience)

Discussion in 'Model S' started by lolachampcar, Dec 12, 2013.

  1. lolachampcar

    lolachampcar Active Member

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    My wife just got hit on the right side of her new MS. The other driver was pulling out of a parking lot in an SUV and managed to get both passenger doors and the right rear quarter panel. All will need replacing.
    My question for others out there is how did you handle damage, diminished value and how long was the wait for parts (two door shells and a right rear quarter panel in this case). I'm considering just ordering a replacement car and disposing of this one and was curious if anyone else has gone this route.
    Thanks,
    Bill
     
  2. Brit4864

    Brit4864 Member

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    Sounds like a very similar accident to mine. State Farm, the other person's (at fault) insurance company paid for the repairs although I'm now involved with a lawyer and filing a lawsuit on SF as they haven't offered much in the way of diminished value, loss of use etc. The full story of the accident is here: http://www.teslamotorsclub.com/showthread.php/19608-I-m-in-mourning! That rear quarter panel is very expensive to replace.
     
  3. lolachampcar

    lolachampcar Active Member

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    Not sure if the pic is going to do the damage justice… The door jam is creased on the rear passenger door where the quarter panel has buckled.
     

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  4. markb1

    markb1 Active Member

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    Ouch. That looks like $20,000+ to me. Mine was $17,000 for one door and the quarter panel. That quarter panel costs a fortune to replace. I think it was about 3 weeks to order parts and 3 weeks to repair.
     
  5. callmesam

    callmesam Member

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    That really stinks @lolachampcar. It's good that you have insurance to handle, but diminution of value is going to haunt you unless you plan to keep the car forever.
     
  6. FredTMC

    FredTMC Model S VIN #4925

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    Oh my... Terribly sorry to see this. Sucks. Sorry, no helpful advice from me (knock on wood)...
     
  7. spatterso911

    spatterso911 MSP#7577 **--** MX#1891

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    I had rear quarter panel replacement, and it was around $12K to replace. Took about 3 weeks to get the part from Tesla. Repair is flawless, although I am dealing with a wind noise problem that I have to get checked out. Count on about a 2 month repair time. Good luck with the diminished value claim.
     
  8. Gizmotoy

    Gizmotoy Active Member

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    #8 Gizmotoy, Dec 12, 2013
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2013
    Wow, that's terrible. Sorry to hear that. In the picture the damage doesn't look that bad, but it sounds like those body panels are awfully expensive. It's not a lot of damage to any one place, but a little damage to many places. Sounds expensive. Two doors, the quarter panel, a wheel, that chrome strip/trim under the doors, and maybe a tire and a bumper. Ouch.

    I think I saw a thread awhile back where someone argued for and received something like a 15-20% diminished value claim after an accident, and there was someone (claims adjuster maybe) who posted and said they've done 5-10 Model S estimates for diminished value claims and it had the guy's contact info. I'll see if I can dig it up.

    Turns out my recollection was a little fuzzy, but here is what I was thinking of:
    http://www.teslamotorsclub.com/showthread.php/24561-Diminished-value-after-a-wreck-in-a-model-S?highlight=diminished
    Since you're in Florida, pay particular attention to Seven7's post on the first page. dvguru was the appraiser I was thinking of.
     
  9. steve841

    steve841 Active Member

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    UGHHH! I hate these threads!

    Good luck. Sorry to hear about the pending divorce! :scared:
     
  10. lolachampcar

    lolachampcar Active Member

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  11. pimp-boy

    pimp-boy Member

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    What type of $#@%ing idiot pulls out of their parking lot and scrapes practically the length of the whole car? Is that person driving with "corrective lenses?" Damn... Sorry to see that. I would be pissed too!!! Too bad you can't say "Take the #^@%ing whole car and give me my money to buy a new one!!!!"

     
  12. adelman

    adelman R 539, S VIN S44, X Sig#1

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    You can. First off, on "loss of use", doesn't Hertz in San Francisco rent the Model S? The cost of the rental sets the value of the loss of use. $400/day. Six week repair, $16,800 in loss of use.

    On the car, just tell the insurance company that you don't want a car with a damage history, and you intend to sell it immediately after the repair with a full disclosure as to the damage done to it, and claim the difference between the pre-repair value (ask Tesla what the trade-in value was) and the actual selling price as additional damages, plus the sales tax.

    I'll bet in light of that threat, and the $16,800 in loss of use claim, that they're not so interested in rolling the dice and might just cut you a check in exchange for the car.

    Ken
     
  13. Lloyd

    Lloyd Active Member

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    Rental rates start around $500 per day, plus $0.49 a mile after the 75-mile mark,
     
  14. scott2613

    scott2613 Member

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    We are an authorized Tesla collision repair facility, although being in Wisconsin we wouldn't be much help for you. Tesla feels that their customers should not have to be without the use of their car for more than thirty days. They have really accelerated their parts order fullfillment and we do not think that time frame is at all unreasonable. in fact we believe it should take less than 20 days for a major repair if the parts are not an issue. Many Tesla approved body shops are the same places that repair similar cars like Porsche, Audi and BMW. They are used to taking their time and doing a perfect job. When we were in Las Vegas recently at the Tesla repairers meeting one of these shops decided to withdraw from the program when they heard that the thirty days was Elon Musk's directive. Actually taking more time than is necessary has nothing to do with quality but old traditions and ways of working die hard.
    Scott Marshall
    Marshall Auto Body
     
  15. jkeyser14

    jkeyser14 Member

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    I mentioned this in the other thread, but if anyone wants to sell their previously damaged Model S, I'd be looking to pick up a well depreciated car. This would also allow you to properly prove the depreciated value to the insurance company.
     
  16. lolachampcar

    lolachampcar Active Member

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    First of all, thanks to all those with words of support. This forum can be a bit rough at times but it can also be a terribly friendly place to lick your wounds :)

    It feels as though there are realislistically only two paths forward. The first would be to order new and sell the current car as is when the new one comes in. The current car has perfect door seal, fully functional doors and no added wind noise in the cabin. In short, it is perfectly drivable. I washed the car to get rid of all the black plastic bumper smear and found one small nick on the rear wheel. That was nice to see as it means the suspension was not stressed in any meaningful way. The car is now white down the side and it looks like someone took a soft plastic butter knife and "spread" the aluminum across the door intrusion barriers. It would be kinda neat if it were not so sad; but again, it is only sheet aluminum. The rubber bumper on the SUV was gentle as it did its work. My wife was a bit sore last night but the real plus is no one was seriously hurt.

    The second approach would be to fully embrace the repair process with all its rental car and insurance company hassles. State Farm appears to be a pain to deal with from the shop point of view. A most recent rear quarter panel repair started with a $7700 estimate and end up just over $22K. The modus operandi appears to be to low ball it on the way in and make the shop come back over and over to finally get the number to a reasonable amount. I have no reason to believe they will not take this same cost control approach with my wife's car even when using the same shop and the same adjuster. Once the repair is complete, I will then have to have the car appraised and go for diminished value. Again, SF has demonstrated a willingness to low ball that number as well knowing most will loose 40% of any recovery in contingency fees should an attorney be employed to do better. I believe these tactics are a calculated response to fraud and loss control. In my opinion, this is as ethical as the fraud it is meant to combat but is also a fact of life.

    I'm working the numbers now to see what the yield for the car as is will need to be to simply order new. If I am going to have to fight to clean this mess up, I might as well put my wife right back exactly where she was with her car yesterday morning give or take a few thousand miles. We have already discussed a new configuration and she wants to change nothing. In porridge parlance, her MS was just right :)

    WRT the car, someone will get a nice 4500 mile car (she will put another 1K miles on it before someone picks it up) with a clear CarFax and obvious accident damage. I'm sure there is a capable person or two out there that would be happy with a non-Telsa approved repair on a heavily discounted S85. This will allow the new owner to control repair costs. If they have a NASCAR bent to them and are only viewed from the driver's side, the car does not even need to be repaired.
     
  17. lolachampcar

    lolachampcar Active Member

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    I got some pics up on my site. White is hard to shoot and try to get any definition. The damage does look a lot better once I got all the black bumper rubber off the side of the car :)
    2013 Tesla Model S85
     
  18. Gizmotoy

    Gizmotoy Active Member

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    Unless I'm missing something, the first option lets the other driver's insurance company off the hook completely. I can completely understand not wanting to deal with them, but taking the hit of selling and replacing a damaged car for something that wasn't your fault would be hard for me to swallow. At the very least delay the repair until the new one arrives, or sell it to the buyer repaired... you drop it off at the shop, he picks it up.

    I wouldn't let them get out of writing a $20k+ check just because they made the process annoying. If you want an easier process and (in FL) can live without the diminished value claim, you could coordinate the repair through your insurance company. They make the process really easy on you because they know they can force the other insurance company to pay. Keep an eye on that medical stuff, though.

    So there are other options you may or may not have already considered.

    Damage doesn't look as bad when it's clean. Hardly any paint lost.
     
  19. strider

    strider Active Member

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    But this is exactly what insurance companies are SUPPOSED to do. Put you back to where you were before the accident. I have always had a horrible time dealing with any insurance company. They always low-ball you knowing that your only option is to sue them and that the attorney's fees will be more than the difference in what you'd get vs what they are offering. Their entire business model is based on screwing people and they have the government using guns to force everyone to buy their products. Pretty sweet gig if you ask me.

    But I would force them to pay something. A repaired car has more "diminished value" than a repaired one. Make them fix it even if you're going to buy a new one.
     
  20. GlennAlanBerry

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    I used to be a bodily injury automobile insurance claims adjuster for CSAA in San Francisco back in the mid-1990s. My experience is based on California law, so YMMV.

    As an insured, you actually have more power and control over this than you might think. I would definitely file a claim with your insurance and let the adjuster look at your car. I would also try to get a repair estimate from a couple of good shops to use as ammunition. Since the other driver is at fault, your insurance company is going to pay for the repairs and subrogate against the other insurance company to recover their costs. In this situation, they don't have as much incentive to low-ball you on the repairs.

    If your wife is feeling any ill effects whatsoever, it makes sense to see a doctor as soon as possible, both for medical reasons and for any bodily injury claim you might decide to make. During all of this, if you feel your insurance company is "screwing you over", you can escalate it to a supervisor and start talking about "unfair claims practices". That usually gets their attention pretty quickly. Writing an actual letter or two to your claims department is also a good idea. Writing to your state insurance commissioner is also helpful.

    At any rate, being reasonable, but firm, with good documentation of things like repair costs and appraisal values gives you a much better chance of a good result.

    - - - Updated - - -

    @lolachampcar It really sucks what happened to your wife and your Model S, so I totally sympathize with you. That said, I would at least file a claim with your insurance company before you consider simply selling the car "as is" and take a huge financial hit in the process. Worst case scenario, you should be able to cash out your claim (where they pay you for the estimated repair costs, after a shop had gone through the adjustment process with State Farm). You want to start out with a repair estimate from a shop you trust, and make State Farm go down from there. Maybe your local Tesla SC can give you some shop recommendations.

    It seems to me that if you sell the car "as is" simply to avoid the hassles of a repair, you are going to take a substantial hit on the actual sale value of the car, plus you are going to take the sales tax and registration hit when you buy a new Model S. Someone who buys your current car is not going to be eligible for the $7500 Federal tax credit either (although you would get it again for the replacement Model S).
     

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