Best of Deals Car Reviews Repair Shops Cars A-Z Radio Show

[CO] Co-worker hit me in the parking lot at work, what should I expect?

Neither of us have ever been in an accident before so we were not sure how the process works. He gave me his insurance card and I called his insurance to start a claim. They took all of the information and assigned me a representative. He has already admitted to be at fault, but the representative told me that there may be a “coverage issue” as the insurance was not in the driver’s name, nor the vehicle. He said he had to talk with the policy holder and the driver before saying anymore but asked that I take the car to a shop of my choosing for an estimate in the meantime. My car is a 2004 Scion XB that doesn’t have much value according to KBB but I’d still like to keep the car as I can get new doors for it at the junkyard so I’m hoping they don’t total it - or if they do, I hope that I’m able to buy it back at a reasonable price and pocket some of the money to perform the repairs on my own. I’m not sure how long this process takes or how it’s done so I’d just like to get some feedback from others who have been through a similar experience.
Here are some photos for reference:

Do you have collision coverage on your car?

No, I do not.

FWIW . . . i’m leaning towards they will NOT total the car

While the B-pillar may need to be pulled straight, I doubt any drivetrain or suspension components are affected

Also, no deployed airbags, I presume?

Does the car still track straight?

1 Like

Do as the adjuster says. This is what they do and sometimes it can take a while. Get two estimates and also talk to your insurance agent if you have one or at least the insurance rep.

How it works depends on the company. You are entitled to be made whole. In other words, brought back to the point before the accident. If you choose NOT to repair the car and just keep the money, that is your right. Don’t let them give you less because you want to fix it yourself. It shouldn’t take more than a few days at most to work out the details.

If the insurance company does direct payment to the body shop, if the shop finds more damage they can work with the insurer to get more money. If you just take a check and hire the body shop yourself, its on you to fight with the insurance company for more money.

If they find the other driver isn’t properly insured, he still owes you the cost of the repair. You can work it out between yourselves, hire a lawyer, or take your co-worker to small claims court. Better to work it out between yourselves… but get any agreement in writing. That protects you both.

1 Like


It looks like it needs two recycled (used) doors (if available), refinishing of the doors, installation and transferring any trim, and as @db4690 points out, possible straightening/aligning the pillar between the doors.

I see a spot (looks like rust?) on the 1/4 panel just behind the rear door below the handle. Was that a previous blemish, not part of this incident? It’s hard to tell if anything on that panel was involved.

If the co-worker’s insurance does not cover the damage then the co-worker is on the hook to pay for it. If you had collision coverage, you could just get it fixed, minus your deductible, and let your insurance company get the money back. New doors or just the skins would be the question I guess but the body shop will be able to determine which is best. It doesn’t take much to re-skin a door but there is refinishing involved and hanging the doors again.

Well I just got off the phone with his insurance rep and he is telling me that they need to conduct an investigation to see if they would have taken the risk to add the driver prior to the accident or something along those lines - I didn’t exactly understand entirely but basically he told me that it may not be covered as the driver was not on the policy even though he was given permission to drive the vehicle. He recommended if I wanted to speed things up that I should call my insurance and file a claim with them and they will go after his insurance company or the driver himself if it is denied. It’s a bit conflicting to me as when I spoke to my co-worker, the rep told him that it shouldn’t be an issue, that he just needs to be added to the policy so I’m really not sure what to believe at this point.

Talk to your own agent but if you don’t have collision, I think you are out of luck with your own insurance. That’s why for the $50-100 a year extra, it takes all the hassle out of it. Maybe your uninsured/underinsured coverage would do it but talk to your agent pronto.

Depending on the state - you may need collision insurance.

Unfortunately I only have liability coverage.

What state do you live in. Most states it shouldn’t matter who’s on the policy or not. The policy is on the vehicle - NOT the driver.

If insurance doesn’t cover it - you can sue the owner of vehicle and/or driver.

I’m in Colorado. I just find it strange that the rep is telling me one thing while telling the driver another.

As much as people here want to help it sounds like your states version of Insurance Commissioner may be your only course of action. Talk to your agent first maybe they can get you the best way to proceed.

Each state has its own insurance laws, and you need to check out yours with your state insurance commission. Some states are “no fault”, meaning each driver pays for his/her own damages. You need to find out Colorado’s.

In most states, the best approach is to contact (1) the police, to get an accident report, and (2) your own insurance company. Follow your company’s guidance.

Some states require by law an accident report for any accident exceeding a specified amount of damages. Some states require a police accident report. Be sure you follow your state’s guidelines. And should you need to go to court, a police accident report will establish liability beyond dispute. Many insurance policies require an accident report, and you can be cancelled if you fail to file one and the other driver does.

You really need to find out your state’s laws and your insurance company’s policies and follow them. Go by the book and it’ll just be an inconvenience. Fail to, and it could be a policy cancellation, and in some states perhaps even a license suspension.

As far as “no fault” . .

If I’m stopped at a red light, and an idiot blatantly plows into me from behind, I have to pay for the damages to my car?

Is there any possibility of getting reimbursed . . . ?

If you want the answers to your questions, you’ll need to check with the state(s) where the incident(s) hypothetically occurred. Each state has its own laws and regulations.

In our state police do not do accident reports for accidents in say a privately owned parking lot. Paintless dent repair might be an acceptable option,.

I can’t speak for CO but here in OK insurance coverage only applies to the drivers who are listed on the policy.

In other words, if I loan my car to someone who is not named on my policy and they have a collision the insurance company is off the hook and the liability would be all on me.

Hopefully this deal will not go sour on you because if the insurance company washes their hands of it that would leave you in the position of bringing suit against the person driving the car, the car owner, and the insurance company.
In a case like it’s unlikely any attorney would handle this for you without a sizeable retainer.