Hello. I had a motor vehicle accident on...

Asked by Jeaneffer Theledi on 28-05-2024 17:25:32
Question posted in the General Law category relating to Eastern Cape

Hello. I had a motor vehicle accident on the15th of December 2023. I had hit a rock and my Car dashboard indicated low oil levels. I stopped immediately and called my insurance company. They came and towed the car. 

Then my claim was approved  on the 11th of January 2024 after taking me from pillar to post, questioning me about the incident everyday. They then chose panel beaters and mandated them to replace my car's oil sump and mountings. I waited for parts till March. Car was fixed and I was told on the 9th  March to come collect. When I got home with the car, I realized that the car was dripping oil. Called panel beaters the next day, they immediately came to collect the car. Next day, they checked it, found that the tappet cover had a hole. They contacted my insurance and did an additional for the tappet cover, ordered it and fixed it within a week. I went and picked it up. I drive about 5 minutes from my house to work. So, during the week of 18-22 March while driving to work, I could hear a grinding sound from the car while driving. That was strange because I had never experienced that before. My car was fairly new. It had around 3000km only. Then I also heard it on Sunday when I went to church, which is 30 minutes away from my house. I also started to see problems when changing gears, the transmission would shift itself back to neutral. From gear 3 to 6, i experinced problems with gears also getting stuck. So, I had a 6 months service coming up, decided I will let them know when I take it there. When I took it to chery for service, they test drove it and told me that they suspect there is something wrong with the gearbox. 

I immediately called my insurance and the panel beaters and asked them if they give me permission to leave the car at chery and let them inspect the gearbox, they refused and advised me to take the car back home. This was on the 27th of March. Then the next day the panel beaters called me and told me that they will collect the car after the Easter weekend. My insurance company also sent me an email to confirm. Following week they didn't pick up the car. On the 9th of April I contacted them and the next day they came to collect the car and promised to take it to chery to look at the gearbox. It went to chery on the 11th April. Chery took out the gearbox for assessment and saw that there were low oil levels in the gearbox. They then established that the gearbox is damaged because of those low oil levels and also established that it was not manufacturer's fault because there are no cracks that indicate otherwise and that as a customer I only complained about the noise after the incident. So they said the gearbox drainage plug appears to have been removed and put back when they were fixing the sump. The panel beaters refused to acknowledge any wrong doing from their part so my insurance company took the gearbox to their own investigators. They have sent me a report today, 28 May and it says exactly what chery report said. That the problem is the drainage plug that was removed and put back when fixeng the sump. And the gearbox levers got damaged because of grinding due to low levels of oil.

So, my insurance is now saying they are waiting for response from their managers to be given the way forward. So, my question is, as a consumer, what are my rights? How can I get the insurance company to compensate me for almost the 6 months that I suffered and how can I make them take accountability for choosing panel beaters that have ruined my car and my Car is still new, I'm paying it through a bank and yet, I have fears now as to what else could go wrong once it comes back. Is it possible to get my insurance company to give me a new car after all the wrong things that went on with that car? Please assist. 

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