Case Study

CASE

Auto collision insurance dispute: Rental vehicle coverage

Closeup traffic cone front of tow truck

Synopsis of Complaint:

There was an auto collision and the issue in dispute was reimbursement for the total cost of the tow expenses and rental expenses.

The consumer had his vehicle towed 3 times to accommodate removal from the accident scene to the collision reporting center and then to a body shop. The insured did not advise the insurer ahead of time of the 3 tows and proceeded to forward a bill for the cost of 3 tows for a total of $1,211.50. The insurer felt the cost was excessive and felt they could have negotiated a better price. They paid $1,011.50 based on what they felt they would have paid if given the opportunity to negotiate the cost. This left the consumer out of pocket $200.00.

The insurer has a program where they offer the policyholder $20 per day if they choose not to take a rental vehicle. The consumer initially took a rental but ultimately decided he did not need the rental so returned it and requested reimbursement for the remaining time he was entitled to the rental. The insurer refused to pay this amount as he had taken a rental, so the offer was no longer available since he did not choose it from the start. The amount requested was $140.00.

Review by GIO:

In the informal conciliation process CSO spoke to the insurer, who provided a detailed letter explaining their program and process. They refused to change their initial stance and the file prepared to move to mediation.

Resolution:

During preparation for mediation, the insurer spoke with its claims department and ultimately decided to pay the outstanding amounts to the consumer. The rental was paid as the adjuster did not advise the consumer at the outset that he could not change his selection once it was made.

GIO is an independent body set up to help Canadians find a fair resolution to disputes with insurance providers. GIO can provide advice on dealing with your insurance company as a first step. If you are not satisfied with the decision from your provider on your claim, GIO can help resolve your claim. 

If you’d like to submit a claim visit here.

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