VIC Minor Car Accident - Car Insurance didn't Give Quote before Repairs

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14 April 2015
On the 25/11/2014 I was in a minor car accident. At an intersection, I was stationary behind another vehicle at a red light. As the lights turned green, the car in front of me slowly proceeded ahead a few meters, as did I, but then suddenly braked and I rear ended the bumper of the car at approximately 10km/h or so. I knew it was my fault, as I suppose I wasn’t keeping a safe distance from the car. There was no noticeable damage to my car, but the rear bumper of the other vehicle had what looked like a few little scuff marks on it (also near a reverse sensor).

The owner of the vehicle told me it was a new company car (Holden Captiva) and that the company would most likely make a claim as soon as possible. So we exchanged details, although because this was my first car accident and didn’t exactly know what to do at the time, we both only got each other’s drivers licence details and rego.

Now, my car insurance excess fee is about $2100, so I figured if the cost of the damage was under the price of my excess, which I was under the impression it definitely would’ve been, I wasn’t going to bother making the claim to my insurer because there was no damage to my car.

A few weeks went by and I hadn’t heard anything from anyone, until on the 20/01/2015 I received a letter from their insurer informing me that a claim was made and I was responsible for the cost of damage etc. I called their insurance company, as instructed, and told them I wasn’t going to bother making a claim if the price of the damage was under my excess. I also asked if they had a quote on the price of the damage, and they told me the car hadn’t even been looked at yet.

A few months had passed, and I was beginning to think that maybe they weren’t going to follow through with it or something, until yesterday, the 13/04/2015 I received an email with an attached letter, quote and invoice amounting to $1880.46 with “strictly” 7 days to pay it.

So what confuses me now is, on the only quote I had received which was attached to that email I received yesterday, why does it say that the job was quoted on the 9/12/2014, when the person whom I spoke to over the phone on the 20/01/2015 told me it hadn’t even been looked at yet?

Am I not entitled to three separate quotes or something prior to the repairs? Or at least be informed of the quote and price beforehand?

I'm just looking for some advice on this and an opinion as to whether or not what they've done is wrong, let alone legal.


Maybe you can contact the financial services Ombudsman, they can help resolve issues relating to insurance matters.