On Sunday I was driving as slowly on Interstate 394 as everyone else was, 'cause the roads were all icy and snowy and gross.
I was also maintaining the correct distance between my car and that of the dude in front of me.
(It's not like y'all don't know where this is going at this point...)
1. The ice was discourteous enough not to relay the obvious instructions being relayed to the road (namely, "accommodate the requested stoppage") by my spanking-new front brakes and allowed my car to instead continue its forward trajectory into a SUV; nice going.
2. The damage to the SUV's rear bumper was minimal and the dude ("Crashee") was all nice and stuff; I gave him my insurance info but told him I'd prefer to see if I could do this out of pocket (keep maybe my premiums low-like).
3. I got an email Sunday night or Monday morning from my insurer saying "The email contacts for your claim have been updated." See, I didn't file no claim; texted Crashee who said he's on board with me paying out o' pocket but he needed to file the claim to protect himself.
4. He texted me early Wednesday with the estimate from the body shop: $365. That same day, I drove to said body shop and plunked down a $400 cash deposit (got a receipt for it of course) and texted him that that had been done.
I now think things really are done, but what I want to do now - mind you this is my first car accidentette so I've not been through this at all before
- is to see if whatever the heck is in process at my insurance company can be closed with a note that "This matter has been resolved amicably between the parties without insurance involvement AND WITHOUT EITHER PARTY BEING DEEMED CULPABLE" [or words to that effect]. For indeed no human being bore culpability for this, 'twas the ice that committed criminal neglect.
See, I don't know if the insurance company's systems automatically deem me a worse driver just off of someone filing (or starting to file) a claim; I'm disappointed that the only way I found out about the claim was an email "updating the contacts" and didn't get a "Oh, btw someone totally filed an insurance claim against you; we thought maybe we should let you know." I also don't know if any info has gone into whatever shared repositories the insurance companies use (they must share claim histories & driving records among each other somehow, like the way credit card companies share payment data into Experian & Equifax & those guys?) and whether there's going to be negative impact on any future quotes when I go shopping for liability insurance in the future.
Is it reasonable to ask Crashee to agree to "co-sign" a communiqué like that? I mean I've laid down the cash for the repairs and the body shop certifies that they have it so he's not in any kind of financial peril at this point, right?
-- worried and disoriented --
Pancakes are delicious.