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I'm worried....please help...

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  • I'm worried....please help...

    Alright, here goes, my 1994 trans am was damaged while parked about 8 months ago outside of a shopping mall. No information was left, and b/c I didn't have full coverage, I didn't fix the vehicle. It's obvious the damage is prior b/c of exposure to the elements
    This last friday I was driving in the rain close to work, traveling uphill at about 25mph. I moved left to go around a vehicle parked on the street, and apparently so did an oncoming vehicle because we met in the center lane. She was moving left to clear a parked vehicle as well. We met in the middle head on, we both hit our brakes and slid into each other. We backed up and parked and determined no one was injured (it was a light hit, that was a formality) Her vehicle aslo had major prior damage. Her hood had been buckled previously (there was rust on the metal where the bends and creases in the hood were) and the right headlamp was zip tied in place. We looked at the damage and determined nothing major had resulted. A lot of paint was missing off of my bumper where it had flexed. I'm guessing most of that was due to previous exposure to the elements from the previous collision. Her left headlamp housing was cracked a little. I started to call the police and she asked me not to. I asked why, and she said b/c there wasn't really any damage to either vehicle, and that she was already late to pick her husband up. My car looked ok, so I said alright and was on my way.
    Not 45 mins later her husband and her were standing outside my job site looking at my car. I walked out and introduced myself. Her husband said that the wreck was my fault said something about the car making a noise where the cam pulley was rubbing against the inner fender. (engine mounted sideways) I explained that there was no way we collided hard enough to cause that amount of damage. I again offered to call the police, but he said no. (I know I should have, I feel dumb for not doing it originally) I work at a body shop.....we restore vettes...and I'm still in school, so I have a lot to learn, but I offered to let him use a pry bar to try and push the inner fender out. I told him I didn't want to touch his vehicle b/c I did not want to be responsible for anything. After that I offered to help him zip tie the other headlight on where the mounting tab was broken. I offered to give him my information, but he declined. I didn't think any more about it.
    I had some free time this weekend so I did my best to fix some of the damage where the paint had came off. I ended up just rattle canning some of the chips where paint was missing so it wont look so bad (I don't plan on keeping the car much longer b/c of gas prices, I want something more economical, so I didn't want to replace parts) Now, my mom was away for the weekend, when she got hom today and I explained what had happened she was furious. She said not calling the police was a bad idea b/c they can file a civil suit and say the driver of the other vehicle was hurt in the collision. I'm worried at this point. Without a police report....what happens in a situation like this?? i've provided as many details as possible to try to get an accurate response. Should I call the police now? I was told that since we both "fled the scene of an accident" that everyone pays for their own vehicle damages, but that has nothing to do w/ personal injury, is this true? Any advice, or am I making a big deal out of nothing? Thanks for putting up with my post, I'm really worried about this one. What should I do?? :-(

  • #2
    Don't know what state you are in, however in Florida you can get a crash report a complete it yourself. Not sure about other states.

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    • #3
      same here in texas
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      • #4
        this may be dumb but....

        I'm in texas...what good would a crash report do after the fact? Doesn't there have to be a police officer to verify facts? I'm ot worried about damage to my vehicle, just worried about them trying to come back and twist events. Could they win a civil case w/o proof? What about trying to come back and get my information, saying it was my fault or something?? One more thing, and this was a point my mom brought up. What happens if they call the police and say I fled the scene?? Like a hit and run type thing, what happens then? What if they didn't have insurance?? Sorry guys, don't mean to be a pain, just trying to find out what I should do to protect myself...and what could possibly happen. thanks...

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        • #5
          In Ohio if you have an accident I think anybody cn fill out a report. There's a little check box for officer or non officer. Were there any witnesses to the accident? To a degree she would have to prove the accident was your fault anyway. Remember, anything she does to you, you have the same rights to do it right back to her. Unless she went right to the police dept and filled out a report alledging that you ran off, she probably won't get anywhere with it. Also if her vehicle was in another accident previously, there might be a way to get a copy of that report. That way you can alledge that the majority of her vehicles damage was done prior to her accident with you. It sounds like she's trying to cooerce you into paying for her previous accident. Also, did you exchange information? Did you see her drivers lisence? She might be bluffing, and I think she probably is, because she would have had the police there on the spot if she really thought she was in the right. Her boyfriend or husband or whatever might have put her up to this too. I wouldn't worry about it until something happens. If she does try to take you into court, file a counter suit. If she pushes it, that might make her reconsider. Good luck
          "Well I'm here now, so deal with it."

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          • #6
            I know this doesn't help you now, but in the future and for anybody else reading this KEEP A CAMERA IN YOUR CAR!!!! ALWAYS! Just buy a cheap throw away camera and stick it in the glove box. That way if your ever in an accident you can take pictures right then and there. Take pictures of any cars involved, traffic signs, road conditions, the people involved, anything and everything. Pictures can be worth a lot more then your lawyer if you ever need to go to court.
            It's 106 miles to Chicago, we've got a full tank of gas, half a pack of cigarettes, it's dark, and we're wearing sunglasses....Hit it!

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            • #7
              thanks....

              thanks everyone. No, we never exchanged information at all.....she doesn't have any of my insurance information, and I never saw any of hers. hopefully this will all just go away, and in the future, I'll be sure to call the police no matter what. My only worry now is that her or her husband will perhaps come to my work and bug me about fixing damages to her car. I think the only reason he stopped is that he saw I worked at a body shop......oh well, I guess we'll see what happens. thanks again everyone

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              • #8
                How did they find out that you work at a body shop? How did they find out where you work?

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by sledhead84
                  How did they find out that you work at a body shop? How did they find out where you work?
                  Was going to post the same thing last night. Something doesn't make sense here...

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                  • #10
                    should have been more clear

                    The collision occured less than two blocks from where I work. Supposedly when the lady came back she had picked her husband up from somewhere nearby...so I'm guessing he works in the same industrial area as I do. There are a couple of body shops, a chrome plating/dipping place, and a place that makes those big bilboard signs out of plexi glass. Perhaps they drove around until they saw my car. I don't know really... Again, to everyone that answered, thanks...

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                    • #11
                      Lawyer proofing and you

                      Absolutely right...keep that camera with you at all times and take notes. Up here, it is not necessary to call PD if both parties are uninjured and initial damage appears to be 500 or less, but you may still call (and I would) so that you don't have to wait for the form to be processed before you get a case #. Also (very important) if you are involved in the collision and opt to go with the form, you should (at least where I live) do it FAST, because if the other guy does the form and you do not within a certain time frame, then you get the magic bench warrant.
                      "It's not how far the shot was; it's how close you were able to get."

                      --Jeff Cooper

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                      • #12
                        Please help

                        Check with the LE agency having jurisdiction where the accident occurred and see if you can do a delayed report. From what you've posted, the other party doesn't seem too interested in having a police report made, and that's usually because of driver license/insurance issues. Sure, they can sue. That doesn't mean they will collect. Chalk this up to a learning experience, and don't spend too much time worrying about it.

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                        • #13
                          Ya, you are worrying to much, she had her chance to make a report and if that came up in court that she didnt call either there would be no case on you. Here in MI I doubt if anyone LEO would take a report for you anyways since there was no injury and minimal damage; our threshold to taking reports is damage of $1000.

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                          • #14
                            Unless the officer was a witness, and there were no injuries, your case is simply a civil matter. The police won't really be verifying anything except that the information that was collected was put on the appropriate lines of the report. Since the vehicles were moved, he can't even verify the exact location of the crash. Just tell your insurance agent that they might be getting a call. Tell the other driver to take you to small claims court if they insist on you paying for damage that you claim you aren't responsible for.
                            Jerry
                            "If all else fails, stop using all else!"

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                            • #15
                              An agency in my area is attempting to send a bill to insurance companies for investigating car crashes.

                              We call them 'crash reports' now, not 'accident reports'.
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