Monday, November 16, 2015

Why do I always get the crazy ones?

Genuine question. I really want to know.

Latest case in point, a routine insurance claim investigation regarding a single vehicle accident.

The claimant, the hapless Mr Harker (not his real name), had only just insured his vehicle the previous day - which is suspicious enough, right?

But that isn't where I came in, no. My role started about seven weeks later.

Before that, the insurer called in a vehicle assessor to inspect the damage. Unfortunately for Mr Harker, he concluded that the damage pre-existed the policy inception by a good six months due to corrosion, rust, and general accumulated filth and grime over the damage.

Well, that's not good for a start.

And in that time, Mr Harker had taken possession of a loan vehicle from a mechanic but had ceased to respond to contact attempts and emails demanding that he return it.

To compound matters, Mr Harker had also started on a hostile stance with his insurer making a number of demands in regards to his claim and generally claiming victimhood. That is when he deigned to respond to attempts to communicate.

So, into this mess I am thrust. 

Noting the growing impatience and hostility of Mr Harker, as well as his general reluctance to respond to direct contact attempts, I decided I needed to be somewhat proactive in reaching out to him. Over the next few days calls to his phone were, as expected, unanswered. So were texts sent. However, when I made an impromptu attendance to his address and spoke to an occupant at the house who confirmed that Mr Harker did indeed reside there (but wasn't in at that time) did I actually get a response.

The very next day I receive a terse email stating that he did not appreciate me making enquiries at his residence and asked whether that could not be considered harassment?

No, Mr Harker, it could not.

However, we arrive at a certain understanding. He was amenable to being interviewed but did not want me coming to his house again. Fine. We'd agreed that I would call him on a particular day and while he couldn't make a definitive time to meet then, he would when I called as arranged.

Except on that day he denied having made any such agreement and he was far too busy to meet. He would get back to me in regards to setting up an appointment.

Now, at this stage the insurer had lost all patience and instructed Mt Harker by email to meet his obligations to the insurer and comply with my request to meet.

Mr Harker's response was to then accuse me, thinly, of theft! Allegedly "some important possessions" had gone missing and fingers were being pointed. He also stated that since my visit, his daughter had grown afraid of strange men visiting the property. I find that interesting as I had attended early afternoon on a school day when his daughter would not have been home.

Unfortunately, if Mr Harker thought his blustering bullshit was going to give him some more time, he was sadly mistaken. Not only is the claim declined on grounds of non-compliance with the investigation, a complaint has been made to the police in regards to motor vehicle conversion by its owner.

Seriously, what planet is he on that he thinks nothing is going to happen?

And a bit more digging has uncovered that Mr Harker has financed his vehicle through a loan, of which it is highly likely a condition is that insurance must be maintained or else the vehicle will be seized as "at risk".

So guess who I'll be calling tomorrow?

Impugn me at your peril, Mr Harker!   


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