Got two letters in the mail today, from Geico insurance. The first one I opened was asking why I hadn't responded to the other one yet. The other one, I found, relates to a claim one of their policy holders is making. "Our investigation shows that you are responsible for the loss referenced above," as they put it. They gave the date of the loss and the name of their policyholder (a name I've never seen).
So, I call Geico. They're having computer trouble, so I have to repeat the 16-digit claim number three times, and the information is slow to come up, but the story basically is that their policy holder found some (apparently minor, but as yet unspecified) damage to her parked vehicle, along with a note describing the vehicle that is responsible and a license number. Said description and number does in fact match my truck, but the note was not left by me (nor does it purport to have been). They were vague on the area where it happened, naming a major street in the area, and since it was a parked car they don't know the exact time. It is a place I could have been -- I do delivery work throughout the county and sometimes beyond -- but I'll have to look through my old manifests at work to get a better idea.
The thing is, I don't remember hitting any parked cars lately, there or anyplace else. Being basically honest and skeptical, I have to admit it is possible that I did so unknowingly, and that this was observed by a helpful witness who left the note. However, I am a bit worried that if I even admit this possibility explicitly, it will be taken as an admission of guilt. And it also seems possible that some random a-hole did the damage and cleverly left a note with false information taken from a nearby vehicle -- though I have to admit it seems more likely he would have simply driven off. (Concievably, he could have had enough people watching him that he felt compelled to leave a note, but not an honest one. Still seems a little iffy.)
Anyhow, I gave Geico my own insurance information, and called my own company next, but they said there's not a lot they can do till they hear from Geico, and then a claims adjuster will call me. Just a mild annoyance for an otherwise peaceful holiday weekend.
If it's worth ranting about later, I'll keep you all posted.
Yep. I'm with ASL on this one. You'd know if you even winged another car. I'm betting you're spot on that someone hit the car, saw your truck parked nearby, and left a note with your info, making said person look honest as well as allowing them to get away with it.
DO NOT admit the possibility that you could have hit a parked car without knowing it. I don't really think that is a possibility. It's even less likely that you wouldn't have noticed, but someone else did, and left a note.
-------------------- "For me, religion is like a rhinoceros: I don't have one, and I'd really prefer not to be trampled by yours. But it is impressive, and even beautiful, and, to be honest, the world would be slightly worse off if there weren't any." -Silas Sparkhammer Posts: 3239 | From: Ontario, Canada | Registered: Sep 2003
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Hard to say if I have damage on mine. I have a 13-year-old pickup truck with about 430,000 miles on it. It's got scratches, dings, small dents, a somewhat munged-up rear bumper, and cracks in the windshield. Most of these either came as a result of very low-speed collisions with stationary objects, or loading and unloading heavy freight. (At least one was the result of someone tapping me in the rear on the freeway and speeding off.) So...unless it were particularly noteworthy, a minor scratch or blemish has a pretty good chance of going unnoticed by me.
One other slight possibility that occurs to me is a result of the fact that the company I work for is going through some hemorraging right now (long story) and some of the employees left and started their own rival company, and have lured some of our customers away (and attempted to go after others), in some cases, we think, by telling our clients things that weren't true. I don't like to think any of them would be vindictive enough against me personally to try to implicate me in an accident they caused -- but the possiblity has occurred to me.
Several years ago (and just at Christmas time) I backed out of a friend's driveway and just barely connected with a car parked at the curb on the other side of the street (curb parking was not normally allowed in the neighborhood, but it was the holiday season and the family in the house across the way had lots of visitors, apparently).
I got out and checked. I had backed into the wing mirror of the parked car. My own van had a little ding in it, about the size of a penny. The wing mirror was crack'd from side to side. That was all the damage I'd done.
So I slogged over to the house and reported my insurance info to the car owner, who thanked me and observed that it would have been easy for me to drive off without notifying him.
And then, a week later...my insurance rep calls me and reads out a laundry list of damages I'd allegedly done to the car--broken driver's side headlight, scrape along the driver's side, dent in the driver's side door, etc.
Except I had not touched the driver's side, as it was next to the curb. I'd cracked the passenger's side wing mirror, and that was all. Fortunately, my friend and his oldest son had witnessed the incident and were able to verify my side of the story. My insurance agent said, "They were just trying to get us to pay for pre-existing damage. Happens all the time."
-------------------- "No hard feelin's and HOPpy New Year!"--Walt Kelly Hear what you're missing: ARTC podcasts! http://artcpodcast.org/ Posts: 7581 | From: Gainesville, Georgia | Registered: Jun 2000
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Slight update: I had the chance today, finally, to check my manifest for the date in question, which greatly incrased my skepticism that this actually involved me. I made two deliveries that day to the area in question, but in both cases I would have been parked in loading zones, not a normal parking lot. Not only would I have been less likely to inadvertently strike another vehicle there (particulary without being aware of it), but it would have most likely been another commercial vehcile, and not someone who was parked for an extended period (they weren't able to give me a specific time frame it might have occurred when I asked). Curiouser and curiouser, as they say.
I haven't heard from either my insurance company or Geico again yet, so it's still on hold for now. But when (if?) they do contact me, I think I'll be on much firmer ground.