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Old 11-18-2014, 06:31 PM   #1
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Need help on insurance claim fast

So yesterday we finally got started on 5 month trip; 30 mins later had to swerve to avoiding getting hit head-on in and underpass that resulted in taking the front a/c off and denting roof/frame and leaving a large gaping hole in roof where the a/c came off of our '09 Keystone Montana 8535SA. Covered with tarp and plywood last night to keep snow and rain out of it as much as possible and ran heat to dry it out as much as possible. Had called the few RV dealers in VT but no one had bay's large enough and the one who did had an RV inside and broke down.
So called and headed down to MA where we bought it that has 15 bays. They first said maybe a couple of weeks if it proved to be to bad on the phone. Called our insurance adjuster who will meet us there in the a.m. Once we got there and checked in, now, before even looking at it, the dealer is saying will be months or may be totaled which will take weeks to determine...remember this before he even looked at it. What the ....
Can we take someplace else? Can we repair ourselves (once totally built the inside of 30' fifth we had used for hauling nursery stock and lived in that for 10 years thank you very much...French entry doors, 4x6 window in back bedroom, etc.)?
Do not understand this process. Then the dealer called and said they needed to winterize for $95...and, I complained since we don't know what we are doing yet...and had thought they were putting it indoors with heat to dry it out, they gave a veiled threat that they thought by looking at our load we were 2,000# over. Don't believe it. But, and, what were they doing looking through the trailer and the bay...we are there for the roof. Now it is outdoors.
Help??!!! We have to meet the adjuster at 8:30a est at the dealer (where we bought it) and not sure what our rights are now that we pulled it into their lot.
Any advice will be greatly appreciated!! Kitaniga!

Nova, Les and Kit n'Kaboodle
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Old 11-18-2014, 09:33 PM   #2
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Sorry, but can't help with any advice. Also sorry about the accident and good luck with the adjuster.

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Old 11-18-2014, 09:46 PM   #3
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So sorry, but glad nobody was hurt.

I have no special knowledge of the insurance or legal business but if at all possible, take a few deep breaths so you're thinking clearly when you meet with the dealer and your adjuster.

IMHO, the dealer might have just been letting you know that he couldn't commit to a repair time UNTIL he was able to inspect it... but it might be anything from a couple of weeks to even having to total the unit.

Are you able to review the details of your policy now? If you don't have the policy with you, maybe you could access it on line. See what it says about this type of accident and see if it includes any benefits like vacation interruption coverage. I'm not sure how they'd deal with this but it might help with some of the expenses you're going to incur.

I wish you the best. It's going to be frustrating I'm afraid.

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Old 11-18-2014, 09:59 PM   #4
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I would wait and see what the insurance adjustor says before making any decisions.

Don't know what to say about your dealer.

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Old 11-18-2014, 10:12 PM   #5
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You have a large change of plans coming. Better winterize & avoid that damage (will not be covered under the collision loss.). You can take it anywhere you want to have dealer look at. Age of unit? Pictures of damage? Policy will be ACV, in layman a terms the trailer will be depreciated, which is correct way to do it. Hopefully you are not upside down on the loan, if any. See adjuster, go home & wait for his estimate. Is truck driveable?
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Old 11-19-2014, 12:47 AM   #6
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Truck wasn't hurt at all. Spoke with our credit union and if totaled will be on the upside by a good amount. But, we are not in a position to go home...this was just becoming our home until we came back in the spring either to find a new land place or go fulltime. So, not the usual set of options. VT does have a rebuilt/salvage title process. We also have do quite a lot of customizing and refitting with specific work on the bed for my heart, composting toilet installed, etc. Really would like to get it repaired or do it ourselves and if not do not like to be strong armed by the dealer. Have been getting it ready and downsizing etc since February for this trip, argh.

I know, trying to draw a deep breath and remember to let it back out...

Want to thank all of you for responding, it does help!!!
Nova, Les and Kit n'Kaboodle
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Old 11-19-2014, 12:55 AM   #7
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Would have understood that but the time frame totally changed once we got there BEFORE they even looked at the unit.

Checked policy online, collision does cover the damage, no vacation interruption but emergency expense but from what I see would take up to 6 mos for reimbursement and then only for $1000 but would be fine but have no place to return to and can't really afford to have to sit it out and wait.

Can live with most anything, of without, just need to know. Just don't want to be at the dealers mercy so to speak.

Thanks again to everyone!
Nova, Les and Kit n'Kaboodle
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Old 11-19-2014, 12:58 AM   #8
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Oops, no photos...was snowing and raining at the time and frankly didn't think quick enough. Unit is a 2009 Montana 8535S cream puff that everyone thought was brand new due to its condition.
Nova, Les and Kit n'Kaboodle
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Old 11-19-2014, 09:12 AM   #9
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I think the dealer is full of it. An Ac getting ripped out of the roof does not constitute a totaled trl. The roofs are made out if wood and aluminum . You just need to take out the damaged area and replace it. Don't let them sell you a line of crap.
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Old 11-19-2014, 09:50 AM   #10
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Well, the adjuster is inclined to total as well!?? Probably 8 rafters(?) ceiling joists damaged. But would be until late January. Dealer hoping to sell us different unit. We like ours but have to get on the road. Also, no ones mentioned water damage since it poured buckets of rain. If they total? Can we buy back and repair or get it repaired some place? Like our model and didnt see
Anything comparable. Oh what to do...
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Old 11-19-2014, 10:41 AM   #11
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If it is totaled you do have the option of purchasing the trailer from the insurance company. All they would do is cut a check for the trailer then deduct your negotiated buy back price. It really isn't hard and sometimes the insurance company will decide to sell it quite cheaply because it can be a hassle for them to unload some vehicles.
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Old 11-19-2014, 05:20 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by jacknife View Post
I think the dealer is full of it. An Ac getting ripped out of the roof does not constitute a totaled trl. The roofs are made out if wood and aluminum . You just need to take out the damaged area and replace it. Don't let them sell you a line of crap.
Actually, it isn't that rare for a ripped out A/C unit to result in a totaled trailer. A friend of ours had much the same thing happen. I saw his trailer, and at first blush, it didn't look that bad.

I had brought some squares and levels with me... None of the walls were square any longer (aluminum frames in the walls; could be bent, could be broken welds), the rafters, from the front all the way back were no longer perpendicular to the walls (even with the walls shifted). With the walls deformed, the attachment points on the floor were also suspect. The only way to verify any of this "hidden" potential damage would be to gut the entire trailer. His trailer was 18 months old...they totaled it as the cost to rebuild the visible damage was going to be high to begin with and with no way to verify or "warranty" any of the repairs due to potential hidden damage, nobody would even attempt to "repair" the unit.

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Old 11-20-2014, 11:01 AM   #13
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Given Webslave's explanation of why it is a total and the OP's predicament, the best course of action may be to ask to expedite the process of totaling the unit so you can get on with your lives. Maybe rent a small storage unit to store salvaged stuff. I doubt you would ever get compensation for upgrades like the compost toilet as they don't do that for trucks/cars either.
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Old 11-20-2014, 11:20 AM   #14
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Although you have a lot of your ideas, mods and heart into that unit.....be prepared to walk away from it if its written off....If there are the structural problems and water intrusion as your describing it might well be not worth fixing and even then, if you undertake the repairs, more problems could show up later down the road......Go out and find another cream puff....

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insurance, need help

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