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  1. davemqv

    davemqv F1 Rookie

    Aug 28, 2014
    3,125
    USA
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    Dave
    I am posting this here as it also pertains to my Ferrari, and many of yours, even though in my case the car involved in the accident below was a Porsche. But this post is meant as half PSA to my Ferrari brethren and half advice request....

    Back in April somebody hit my 1969 912 while I was parked with the door open, with me in it. They peeled the door back. Big mess. They were found to be at fault and admitted fault.

    Anyway... The car is(was) a highly original preservation/survivor car with heavily patina'd paint....one of the main reasons I got it. People have done stories on it. Long story short due to the age and distressed nature of the paint, any freshly painted panels won't match the rest of the car. I have it (and other cars) insured through Hagerty and decided to file the claim through them because they assured me when I called them to report the accident that "they understand classic cars" and would see the car was properly repaired and fully repainted so the whole car would match.

    Unfortunately, when the time came to cut the cheque, their tune changed, Hagerty only agreed to repair the collision damage and paint the effected panels. They said the responsibility to have the paint match fell under diminished value and that I needed to seek out payment for that from the other parties insurance directly. So unless I want to go out of pocket to repaint the whole car, I went from a highly original preservation car to now having a project car on my hands.

    I believe Hagerty should have repaired the car completely and sought out reimbursement through subrogation with the other drivers insurance company, but instead they foisted that duty off onto me. Keep in mind the other driver admitted fault and was found liable. Very disappointing and if anyone here has there car insured with Hagerty, I would make sure you read or reread any updates to your policies. Agreed value, admitted fault on behalf of the other party, "understanding the needs of the classic car owner", etc etc...made no difference in my case. They screwed me. I have asked around and found that Hagerty used to be known for going above and beyond to satisfy the concerns of their clients, but now things have changed...gone public, new business model etc, and I assure you they are cutting corners and in my case, they traded on their prior reputation to get me to sign up, but completely abdicated their responsibility when push came to shove.

    That's the PSA section of this post. Please review your policies and look around for other options even if you think you're fully covered. I 100% believed I was covered against damage like this, but when the time came they pulled out the small print and told me I was not.

    Now for the seeking advice section - I am told my only recourse is to file a claim of diminished value against the other parties insurance (Mercury). I have tried to do so and am getting stonewalled at every turn. I think I need the help of a lawyer, so if anyone knows of one who successfully deals in matters like this, please reach out.

    Once again, please protect your beautiful old (and new) Ferrari's! Make sure your insurance company policy is constructed to cover you in the event of a loss, rather than protect the company from having to pay you.
     
  2. iloveferrari

    iloveferrari Formula 3
    Silver Subscribed

    Dec 14, 2014
    2,092
    USA
    this makes me angry! I am so sorry for your loss, and I agreed with you lawyering up is in order.
     
  3. Shark01

    Shark01 F1 Veteran

    Jun 25, 2005
    5,851
    Unfortunately, I have been through 3 of these situations in 5 years, all on DDs, but it’s the same deal and expecting Hagerty to not act like an insurance company is a bad idea. Just painting the affected area is normal.

    Getting diminished value is good if allowed in your state, and you will need a report by an expert, but don’t expect it to cover a good full paint job.

    Getting a lawyer on a case like this I don’t believe will get you the outcome you want (opinion, not legal advice). It maybe taking the check from the door repair plus the diminished value would cover a big part of the job.

    Another idea is I’ve seen painters that can make incredible paint matches and could let you keep the survivor look.
     
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  4. rob lay

    rob lay Administrator
    Staff Member Admin Miami 2018 Owner

    Dec 1, 2000
    60,191
    Southlake, TX
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    Rob Lay
    I agree with Hagerty that insurance responsibility would be the effected area and not have to match the entire car. I also believe if you have diminished value at the end of day, that if the policy allows for diminished value, you should get paid.

    Now tell me why Hagerty took on the claim if the other party was at fault? They wanted to deal with their insurance company directly and get reimbursed from them?
     
  5. Shark01

    Shark01 F1 Veteran

    Jun 25, 2005
    5,851
    I assume he filed the claim with Hagerty because he thought they would provide more expertise and more likely to fund the whole job…..that they wouldn’t act like an insurance company because they “know classics” or whatever this year’s marketing slogan is.

    They they would try to get reimbursed by the other insurance company.
     
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  6. rob lay

    rob lay Administrator
    Staff Member Admin Miami 2018 Owner

    Dec 1, 2000
    60,191
    Southlake, TX
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    Rob Lay
    If that's the case, then isn't it treated like you are at fault. Hagerty taking the loss, so it will impact you as such. The at fault insurance should pay and should pay what is right, if they don't, then sue.
     
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  7. Shark01

    Shark01 F1 Veteran

    Jun 25, 2005
    5,851
    I agree because I feel I have more leverage as the wronged party and I ***** at them a lot because their ensured is at fault. All 3 times I have done it this way.

    But if you don’t have experience at this, I understand why he thought Hagerty could better service the claim.
     
  8. Ferraripilot

    Ferraripilot F1 World Champ
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    May 10, 2006
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    John!

    Spot on.

    I've actually seen situations like this through to fruition a few times. The judge has always ruled that the directly affected body panels are the only area the defendant is liable for, along with diminished value, which requires an expert report, a good thorough expert report from someone experienced and credible.

    Let's say Hagerty pays the case as you want them to. It's bad business for Hagerty to file a complaint directly against the tort as they cannot guarantee your cooperation as a witness after your claim is resolved, nor will they ever have the same level of knowledge to your car as you will, and a judge/jury will not care as much about an insurer trying to recover damages as they would an individual such as yourself, which is why the complaint is best pursued by you. It's far too ambiguous a situation for an insurer to throw a blank check out there as ultimately the diminished value in the case is up to the judge or trier of fact. Thankfully I have never seen an insurer actually try a diminished value case, they are almost always paid immediately after the lawsuit and expert report are received.

    Cases such as these are very small amounts for them as their defense counsels are far more concerned about the $500k reserved case heading to trial for a broken femur with a teenage defendant who presents poorly. They won't want this sheet metal stuff sitting on their desk long as they know it's simply not one to fight.


    Dave, to pursue this against the tortfeasor you need an expert report documenting exactly why and how your car is uniquely diminished in value, then file a lawsuit against the defendant. That is the only way the tortfeasor will really perk up as when the complaint is filed their defense counsel gets involved and I can tell you from experience they almost always pay these things very quickly after the suit as filed. The expert report may cost a bit but it's your only option.
     
  9. Shark01

    Shark01 F1 Veteran

    Jun 25, 2005
    5,851
    In the current claim we have, we are having trouble getting an alignment between what the report says (about $2,700) and their “best” offer of $500 which is rediculous. We may have to take action in some fashion. We would go to the state insurance board first.
     
    davemqv likes this.
  10. SAFE4NOW

    SAFE4NOW F1 Veteran
    Sponsor Owner

    Aug 25, 2004
    5,448
    Dallas Texas
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    First off, I'm sorry that this situation occurred.

    What State are you located in?

    When you go with your own insurance company ( Hagerty ) remedies available to you are different than when you file with the at fault insurance company.
    I feel like a lot of people want to avoid the stigma of hiring an attorney, however in situations like this, I have never seen an individual get a fraction of what an attorney can.
    Hiring an attorney sooner than later is more beneficial than trying to do it yourself, where you end up digging a hole, THEN asking an attorney to take it over.
    In Texas, diminished value is a very real thing, I have first hand knowledge of multiple cases, many including Ferrari and other high-end performance models.
    Finding an attorney who has experience and access to the data/information is imperative, otherwise, those with limited first hand knowledge wont fight for it, as they don't know what's available to them. ( Read: $$$$$$ )
    Expect to split the disbursement 70% you 30% attorney, which will still be more than you could have gotten yourself.

    Everyone has an opinion, unfortunately a lot of us have had to fight through it ourselves, but none of our opinions, short of the attorneys in the bunch, as based in what the actual process / law allows for State by State

    Good Luck in your fight!

    Steve
     
  11. Ferraripilot

    Ferraripilot F1 World Champ
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    May 10, 2006
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    John!
    This hasn't been my experience at all and I'm in the industry directing quite a few carriers litigation. Hiring counsel to fight DV case solo is tough as many don't want anything to do with it unless there is a personal injury attached.

    A good expert report and a filed lawsuit in magistrate/small claims (below $25k in most states now) is likely plenty given this situation. Judges are usually very friendly to the vehicle owner and almost always prescribe what the expert report testifies to, if it even goes that far, which is almost never does. Seen it many many times. Get an expert report, file the suit, don't lose 30% fees to counsel, really not necessary for these tiny cases.
     
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  12. davemqv

    davemqv F1 Rookie

    Aug 28, 2014
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    Dave
    Hi All,

    Thanks and I appreciate the advice. I am not a litigious person by nature, and usually opt for the old vaudeville philosophy of “just pay the $2” but this situation feels different.

    One point to make about why I filed through Hagerty instead of the other parties insurance…

    When the accident happened I called Hagerty, explained the situation and my concerns, and asked their opinion. The Hagerty representative told me explicitly that I should file through them because they would ensure that my car was repaired properly, including new paint in the entire car so it would match. I explained that the old patina’d paint would be impossible me to match and they told me that Hagerty’s reputation is “to pay for everything” and get the costs back from the other parties insurance, and therefore I should file through them. So I did. Later, when they changed their tune, I reminded them of this and they started switching me from one adjuster to another, sending my case to “special review”, etc etc, and then paid me an amount less than my body shop had estimated for the collision repairs alone.

    At the end of the day I may be out of luck, but the purpose of this post was largely to suggest you all review your policies. Especially if you have a classic Ferrari with patina. As we all know a car’s paint is only original once, and once damaged, the only option to maintain close to original value is to restore the car completely. Otherwise you’ve just got a mismatched car that needs a paint job. Especially when the accident is not your fault, that’s a tough pill to swallow.
     
  13. davemqv

    davemqv F1 Rookie

    Aug 28, 2014
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    Dave
    Correct, except as explained above…it wasn’t an assumption it was what they explicitly said to me.
     
  14. SAFE4NOW

    SAFE4NOW F1 Veteran
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    Aug 25, 2004
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    Fair enough, I was speaking broadly. I am sure your sample size is quite large as you are also in the industry.
    I am speaking from a sample size of 400+/- over the past 6 years here in Texas only.
    While I am obviously not the attorney, I do have direct insight and have helped with many of the cases.
    The cases I have helped with have been significantly higher than small claims would allow, though I cannot think of one that has gone all the way to litigation.

    Expert reports are key, as is an expert presentation. If an owner has no idea what to ask for, how would a judge award it?

    Speaking on Ferrari related DV Claims:
    In the beginning, insurance companies would push back regarding diminished value, as more often than not, actual values were difficult to access.
    Having access to actual sales prices ( New & Used ) , trade in differentiations ( Storied vs Non ) and having a portfolio of these values is invaluable.
    Then, when an insurance company pushes back, there are real world examples to provide, not just an algorithm to work off of. The portfolio is always evolving as to
    provide the most accurate ( up & down ) DV request.
    Can an owner attempt to gather actual values themselves, yes they can try, but where exactly are they going to get it?

    Speaking on Maserati related DV Claims:
    I have fought and won over a dozen DV claims relating to Maserati loan cars, when they were in an accident.
    Claims that started out at an outright denial of coverage that ended with not just DV payment but loss of use ( $75 per day )
    But then again, I have access to the required information to do so.

    An insurance company has a portfolio of their own, the amounts they have paid out in the past for DV claims, I think you could speak to this since you are on that side of the table.

    Does this make sense for Honda's, Audi's, even BMW's maybe not. Can these owners do it themselves, I am sure they can, the stakes are lower too.

    Ferrari, Lamborghini, Pagani, and other high value vehicles.... I tend to think it is worth it to hire a professional. Most of those owners are not interested in messing with it, if they even have time to.

    In the end, its an individuals choice.. do it, don't do it, do it alone, do it with professional help, insurance premiums are paid by most to allow this to be a choice.

    The insurance company is in the business , owners are not...

    YMMV

    S
     
  15. SAFE4NOW

    SAFE4NOW F1 Veteran
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    Aug 25, 2004
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    Thank you for the heads up. It's excellent advise.
    You never need it until you do, then its too late.
    Best of luck in your situation sir

    S
     
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  16. davemqv

    davemqv F1 Rookie

    Aug 28, 2014
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    Dave
    Update…

    Mercury, the company I am now going after for diminished value, says all collision repairs must be completed before diminished value can be assessed. But my body shop (and two others I contacted) have given me estimates of 1-3 year waiting periods due to backlog of work. My body shop has cars that have been there for 2 years waiting to get repaired. Fun!

    I think I’m screwed. Life’s rich pageant incarnate!
     
  17. iloveferrari

    iloveferrari Formula 3
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    Dec 14, 2014
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    I think you need to find an attorney and then stop posting anymore on this case because the other side will summon anything you post online about this case.
     
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  18. Nospinzone

    Nospinzone F1 Veteran

    Jul 1, 2013
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    Weston, MA
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    Steve had asked you what state you are in. Depending on the state you may have recourse that doesn't involve a lawyer. I can tell you in Massachusetts the Division of Insurance would almost certainly be on your side in this case.
     
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  19. Texas Forever

    Texas Forever Seven Time F1 World Champ
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    Apr 28, 2003
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    Insurance companies suck.
     
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  20. davemqv

    davemqv F1 Rookie

    Aug 28, 2014
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    Yes, sorry I missed that. I'm in CA.
     
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  21. Sunshine1

    Sunshine1 F1 World Champ
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    Jan 22, 2011
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    +1
     
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  22. 19633500GT

    19633500GT F1 World Champ
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    Nov 9, 2010
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    Was your original call with Hagerty recorded?

    It must of been. I would ask for all communications from beginning to present to be given to you (and your attorney) for further review.
     
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  23. davemqv

    davemqv F1 Rookie

    Aug 28, 2014
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    All calls are recorded to the best of my knowledge. I asked for copies of any such recordings in writing. I was refused, and told that they are the property of Hagerty and will not be released to me.
     
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  24. davemqv

    davemqv F1 Rookie

    Aug 28, 2014
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    Yes, sorry. Sunny Los Angeles, CA.
     
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  25. arizonaitalian

    arizonaitalian Two Time F1 World Champ
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    Oct 29, 2010
    20,136
    Wyoming
    That’s what attorneys are for…

    years ago on f-chat when the topic of DM came up, there was a referral made in the threads. I cannot recall the details, but there was some sort of specialist resource that folks on here used successful. Sorry I know that isn’t much to go on, but try the search function with multiple words and phrases and in different sub forums. I want to say the guy was in San Diego, but I may be misremembering.
     

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