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Direct Line - How do you get them to fight for you


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What do you do when you know that you are in the right over a car crash yet your insurance company refuses to fight.

 

Just recently my husband had his car crashed into by a middle age lady on a rounabout. She was lost and was driving round the outside of a three lane roundabout looking for the right exit and drove her car into the back wheel on the passinger's side of our car.

 

At the time she admitted that she was at fault and it would be very clear from anyone looking at the roundabout there is no way she was in the right lane or driving correctly.

 

However when Direct Line contacted her insurance company they were informed that she now claims that it was my husband's fault and as there were no witnesses they want to go 50/50

 

We are very angry about this, not least because we have £650 excess on the policy but also because of the effect it will have on our insurance history (we currently have 5 years no claims). It appears that they are prepared to accpet the word of the other person rather than ours and unwilling to do any further invesigation.

 

 

any ideas gratefully received

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We are in exactly the same boat with Tesco Insurance (owned indirectly by Direct Line, haha); our accident was in September and it's taken Tesco and their bunch of monkey-shaped weasels they call solicitors all this time to decide to roll over, play dead and accept 50/50 liability. Thus destroying the OH's no-claims that he was building up quite happily. Same story - a woman pulled out in front of him suddenly and he went into the side of her car. She admitted fault at the scene, but then chav-gorilla husband turned up and started running the show. She's lied and changed her statement a number of times. We've provided photographs, road diagrams, Highway Code directions, speed to weight ratios, the kitchen sink...and all the above weasels can say (when they're not 'in a meeting' or 'on holiday') is that there were no witnesses.

We're giving up and accepting it now. We're just fed up with having to do everything ourselves. You know we didn't even get to meet our assigned weasel face to face? It just feels like we've been doing all the running, only to find out 11 months later that what we thought was a nice straight path is actually a little ouroboros hamster wheel. Lined with spikes.

 

*rant over*

-----

Click the scales if I've been useful! :)

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You should state categorically that you are not prepared to accept a 50/50 settlement. You should also ask them about the company complaints procedure and inform them that if they are not prepared to deal with your claim properly that you will invoke it, taking it all the way to insurance ombudsman if necesary.

 

Direct Line tried a similar thing on with my OH in 2004. She got hit up the rear by a car that had also been hit up the rear by another vehicle (whose occupants did a runner). She got the details off the driver who hit her car. Nice easy claim so we thought, but Direct Line had other ideas. They tried to tell her that they would not claim off the other driver as it was not his fault he had been hit and shunted into my OH. So they expected her to lose her no claims and excess. We wrote to DL and told them it was not accetable and we were not prepared to accept this. Eventually they agreed to reinstate her no claims and also refund her excess, but it took a bit of a battle.

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direct line are well known for this, you get what you pay for. In the first case the damage is to the nsr quarter on a roundabout so it could back up her false claims that you turned across her, with no witnesses and her word against yours there isnt much else they can do really.

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If it was a small roundabout maybe she could argue, but this is a large three lane rounabout with traffic lights and very clear marked lanes - if you are not in the inside line to go round you're in the wrong lane. More like a junction than a roundabout. There can be no question he drove in front of her, he was just going wnere his lane indicated he should go. straight ahead and up a dual carridge way.

 

However since my last email, we have reported her to the police and they have agreed that she was in the wrong.

 

We have also paid for legal assistiance with Direct Line, it would be a interesting case using them to sue direct line for incompetence

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i'm sorry guys but I don't agree with your comments about Direct Line. As an ex-claims handler myself it can be incredibly difficult to fight a policyholders case when a) they have not bothered to get details of independent witnesses b) think that the other persons at fault are going to be genuine and therefore don't take all of the necessary information or check the information given is correct, or c) don't involve the Police.

 

bluecat0208 - how on earth do you expect Direct Line to fight your case when it's your word against the other driver. You have no evidence to back up your case irrespective of the circumstances of how the accident occured. Direct Line have to fight your case but within the Law. Although Direct Line would not dispute your integrity regarding how the accident occured, they need to be able to rely on evidence to prove that the accident was the sole responsibility of the other driver and back this up with independent evidence. Because you don't have any independent evidence to back up your claim there's nothing Direct Line can do other than try and reach agreement with the other insurer - hence the 50/50 liability split which is quite common in cases such as this.

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a tip for all of you !

 

if you are involved in an accident try to ensure that you get the details of as many independent witnesses as possible.

 

phone the Police immediately if injury occurs or drivers get irate/abusive

 

carry a small disposable camera in your boot to take photographs of the scene of the accident - also get a picture of the other vehicle/s and also the driver/s!

 

You will be surprised at the amount of cases I have dealt with where the driver/s of offending vehicles have denied liability completely for being at the scene of an accident. If you have photographic evidence - this helps!

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So what do you do when there are no other witnessess or no one else stops - jump in front of people's cars on a fast road and say "you saw that, be a witness"

 

Plus you don't need to keep a camera in the car, just use your mobile phone - which my husband did - took pictures of the car, the person and her tax disc.

 

It is not a case of his word against her but a case of Direct Line not looking at the site where the accident took place.

 

Three lane roundabout - a car in any of these three lanes can go straight ahead up a duel carridgeway very clearly marked and only ONLY in the inside lane can you go round the roundabout as well as straight ahead. Plus there are four sets of lights at this roundabout. My husband had stopped at the lights and then pulled away to go up the dual carriage way - as was his right and this lady in the far outside lane decided to go around the roundabout on the outside - wrong lane and creashed into the side of this car. There can be no issue about guilt.

 

This is just Direct Line being lazy

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"It is not a case of his word against her but a case of Direct Line not looking at the site where the accident took place"

 

this is irrelevant as the other party can deny that they were in the wrong lane - you need proof that this wasn't the case.

 

I understand that you have been shafted here but with all due respect in the absence of witnesses you will not get any further than 50/50.

 

I would suggest you take photo's yourself and send these to Direct Line explaining again why you are not in the wrong. Direct Line then should write to the other party to see what response comes back.

 

Good Luck

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I understand exactly what you are saying and also aware that it is very hard to create a picture without images.

 

But if this woman was in the right lane, it would have been impossible for the accident to occur. With the direction my husband was going, he could not be in the wrong lane as all lanes on the toundabout indicated that he could go that way.

 

Why I am annoyed is that Direct Line appear to want to roll over and take the easy route. In the past when you had an accident you had to fill in forms, provide diagrams and pictures to the insurance company, now it appears they have a conversation with you and a conversation with the other person's insurance company amd make a decision. Why should I have to fight to make them do their job correctly, if they put the slightest effort into looking into our claim - speak to the local police about the roundabout, request CCV TV footage - it would be clear very quickly that the other person's story does not make sense.

Why don't they do the job they are paid to do?

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Sorry, but I still agree with bluecat; we were always treated as an annoyance, never as paying customers. Our appointed solicitors made constant mistakes, with facts and on forms (we had to send one court form back TWICE because it was so riddled with errors) - it does ultimately feel like the insurance bosses have got together for a few whiskies in their local golf club and a titter at the expense of the great unwashed.

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Click the scales if I've been useful! :)

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The other driver may well be on a forum saying "and anyway this car was about to turn left then pulled back into my lane" who knows, nobody reading this thread and not the insurers. What do want columbo doing door to door in the area?

The insurance company has insured you against loss under the terms of a contract and you decided to make it a cheap contract by applying a £650 excess.

 

If you had paid to insure your car properly you wouldnt be so upset now.

 

Thanks

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I am sorry but I really don't understand your comment about columbo - it doesn't make sense to me.

 

The rest just appears to be having go and being rude - but for your information our car was a £60,000 car and the insurance we pay is not cheap, the excess was chosen as we knew that we would not be claiming on our fully comp insurance for any repairs which cost less than that.

 

If you have some helpful comments I would be happy to hear them. I pay for an insurance company to do a job, if they don't do it, I have every right to make an issue about it and I thought by posting here that someone may be able to help and I am grateful to everyone who has posted supportive comments

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Which part of your contract with direct line do you think obliges them to investigate an accident and recover the excess you specifically excluded from cover?

 

An insurance company will only investigate to recover their own losses, in this case the cost of repairs to your car. These were probably much more than £650, but they knew full well that proof of fault would be impossible to gain so they didn’t investigate; they are not going spend money trying to recover, for you, something you choose not to insure.

 

You bought car insurance, you had an accident, and your car has been fixed.

 

If you want advice, make an official complaint, in writing to direct line they wont do any thing but then threaten the ombudsman. A complaint to the ombudsman whether justified or not costs the company involved, you may get your NCD back just to avoid a complaint.

 

Sorry if I sound rude, but it’s probably intentional

 

 

SS

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What are you talking about - have you even read the rest of the thread. I am not talking about the excess - if we go 50/50 means we only pay £325 anyway plus going 50/50 does not mean that the insurance company will recover it's costs as the car repair is going to cost thousands.

 

I feel that they should do something more than have two conversations and then decide fault. If you disagree with this point of view that's fine, as we clearly both have different ideas over what the role of an insurance company is but why you feel the need to be unpleasant is beyond me. There is no need for it.

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Sorry if I sound rude, but it’s probably intentional

 

SS

 

And what grounds do you have for being this rude? This forum is for helping people in unfortunate, distressing circumstances by giving out constructive advice, not for sniping at other people because you don't agree with them. I would appreciate it if you could bear this in mind.

-----

Click the scales if I've been useful! :)

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Pictures of the crash

Pictures of the roundabout showing the clear lane markings

Police advice - they would be happy to charge the other driver if we wished to go down this route

and if they cared to ask for it - CCTV footage.

 

If she was in the right lane for the direction she was going in, it would have been impossible for this crash to occur and with the direction my husband was going in it was impossible for him to be in the wrong lane.

 

He has seven years no claim bonus and drives over 90 miles a day to work and back and has a clean driving licence. When the crash occurred he was out driving his pride and joy sports car and was not going to be doing anything stupid like being in the wrong lane on a roundabout 2 miles from home which he drives everyday. Unlike the woman who crashed into him, who was in a strange place and had just missed her exit off the roundabout.

 

Just to rephrase again, the reason why I am annoyed is that there is no checking just assume after one conversation and we all know the saying about assuming things. If they invesigated and then found us at fault, then that would be different but taking this sloppy easy route is wrong.

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Pictures of the crash

Pictures of the roundabout showing the clear lane markings

Police advice - they would be happy to charge the other driver if we wished to go down this route

and if they cared to ask for it - CCTV footage.

 

If she was in the right lane for the direction she was going in, it would have been impossible for this crash to occur and with the direction my husband was going in it was impossible for him to be in the wrong lane.

 

He has seven years no claim bonus and drives over 90 miles a day to work and back and has a clean driving licence. When the crash occurred he was out driving his pride and joy sports car and was not going to be doing anything stupid like being in the wrong lane on a roundabout 2 miles from home which he drives everyday. Unlike the woman who crashed into him, who was in a strange place and had just missed her exit off the roundabout.

 

Just to rephrase again, the reason why I am annoyed is that there is no checking just assume after one conversation and we all know the saying about assuming things. If they invesigated and then found us at fault, then that would be different but taking this sloppy easy route is wrong.

 

ok, have her charged, Harsh but fair. It will help your case.

 

Ask to see a copy of her diagram and statement, if DL havent got it, then tell them to get it.

 

Obtain a copy of the cctv, if it costs you get a receipt.

 

Do a good diagram yourself, note where both cars were coming from and going to.

 

Who is the other person insured with?

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Guest strangewayofsavin

Hi Direct line are incompitant [email protected]@&*$s, I had a gentleman drive into the back of my van, I had a witness, the gentleman, told his insurance company that I had reversed into him (On the A38 ) after not hearing anything for about 6 or 7 weeks, I was told that my witness did not count, as they were in my vehicle! and had agreed a 50/50 settlement.

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If shes charged then found guilty in court they have effectively settled it for you that she was at fault then Directline will have the ammo they need to hit her insurance company.

 

Similar thing happened to us the guy on the motorbike that hit us turned left from the right hand lane and took the front of our car off, we did have 2 witnesses but the police charged him with dangerous driving and driving with a defective tyre he was found guilty on both charges and the insurance company used that to good effect

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i had an uninsured driver sideswipe me a few years back. He gave his real name and address and false insurance, he hadnt been insured for 8 years. Anyway i was with churchill and they said that they couldnt do anything as they had no company to claim back from so i had to take the loss of NCB on the chin...............................................................OOOOOHHHHHHH NNNNOOOOO............i said. did i not pay you an extra little premium for legal cover? Yes sir was the reply but its for uninsured losses they said. What then is this claim for? i said. ERRRRRR!!!! they said. They traced him and took him to court, i won and got my NCB plus excess. But only coz i didnt just accept what Churchill said................................FIGHT ON MY FRIEND.

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