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Old 06-05-2015, 06:48   #1
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Borrowed car responsibility

This only loosely relates to cruising in that it seems to drastically effect our kitty and budget at the moment.

Story is, wife borrowed a family members car whom we are staying with for a day. And apparently it got a fairly deep scratch in it when parked somewhere, looks like maybe a shopping cart or something and I say apparently because it of course was not noticed at the time and only a day or two later so who knows how long it was really there. Anyway they are expecting us to pay over $600 to fix this scratch, basically repainting the whole section of the car. I say no freaking way, its sad it got scratched but could have easily happened to them and we did nothing in any way to cause it and its not like it was parked in an odd place etc. My big reservation is if it was my car it would be sad but I certainly wouldn't repaint for a scratch and nor would I expect someone who borrowed my car to do so, cars are lost investments and there's no point in spending more on them after you buy them especially for small scratches. Amongst all of us there appears to be some disagreement however. And of course said owner does not have any type of low deductible comprehensive insurance, etc to cover this type of problem which to me says that they were OK with these types of problems and made the choice to save on insurance and be responsible on their own for such events. Of course it seems that logic changes for them the second someone else is possibly responsible.

Couple of other things worth adding.. The same car got a scratch, probably similar, a while ago and the same person was seemingly "OK" with a shoddy rattle can touch up.. The same person also now broke our IPAD but claims no responsibility for such event and totally denies even touching it even though it was not at all in the same place it was the day before it was broken. Overall I feel like I'm being scammed!

But my wife, of course, since it is her family seems to agree with said family member. I know the wife is always right but this is driving me nuts, or are my apparent sense of morals and right or wrong off here?
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Old 06-05-2015, 07:01   #2
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Re: Borrowed car responsibility

Take the car to its brand car dealership, and ask the service manager if they would mind bringing in their paint guy that fixes the scratches and dents.

Most dealers have the number for the #1 or #2 best paintless dent removers in town, who also are trained in repairing and buffing back scratches.

Instead of $600, you'll probably spend $160. Plus a case of beer, if required.

Cheers,

Zach
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Old 06-05-2015, 07:14   #3
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Re: Borrowed car responsibility

That's a shittysituation mate. I'd be pretty pissed off too but when borrowing anything I have a return in better condition than I borrowed it, if I break it I fix/buy it policy. Probably giving it a wash on the way home might have given you a chance to buff it out first if you knew it happened when It was in your custody, but that hypothetical. Unfortunately you have to suck it up. A bitter pill to swallow. As far as payment I'd see if he's negotiable to give him about half in cash and forget bout it. If not I'd just make payment after he gives you the bill to make sure he's not just scamming some cash and going to leave it or do a dodgy spray can fix. Also if you have time get some other quotes and arrange it all yourself.
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Old 06-05-2015, 07:16   #4
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Re: Borrowed car responsibility

This is a question of morals I believe and keeping the wife happy, saving face with her family etc..
I'd say fix the car and be out $600, but wiser, in that you be nice to them as they are family, but never allow yourself in that situation again.
My belief is if I borrow something, I'm responsible for it, even if it's damaged by an act of God, I'm responsible. One reason I almost never borrow anything, certainly nothing expensive.
Hey at least the motor didn't blow up, because they never changed the oil, but blew up while it was in your possession.

I'd have the car fixed, not give them money, because if you do, you will really be mad when you see the scratch is still there
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Old 06-05-2015, 07:18   #5
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Re: Borrowed car responsibility

Fix it, and never borrow anything from them again.
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Old 06-05-2015, 07:32   #6
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Re: Borrowed car responsibility

Fix it. Will save you many dirty looks during thanksgiving 5 years from now.
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Old 06-05-2015, 07:58   #7
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Re: Borrowed car responsibility

Why do you think you are not responsible for anything that happens to the car while its in your possession?

However, I do think a reasonable approach would be to get the car repaired yourself. Have you tried any of these DentPro type companies?
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Old 06-05-2015, 08:20   #8
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Re: Borrowed car responsibility

It's your money you should have a right to get it repaired at a shop you see fit and pay the shop. I would not give the family member any money.
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Old 06-05-2015, 08:31   #9
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Re: Borrowed car responsibility

Painting just one side of a car will look ridiculous. There's no way to get the paint color to match the weathered side. As someone suggested, save yourself a bunch and take it to a scratch and dent man. If the scratch isn't too big and hasn't dented the metal, rather than a rattle can, you could also find a paint match roller at auto zone that's made specifically for these situations. Little canister about three inches high. Used them all the time for stone chips on my Mercedes hood.


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Old 06-05-2015, 08:36   #10
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Re: Borrowed car responsibility

Pay the $600 and repair it, plus give the people you borrowed it $500 for mental stress. Post your thoughts and experience about it on Facebook and bask in the glow.


I would never either of the above, but you asked (on a boating forum).

BTW - if this unexpected $600 item "drastically" affects your cruising budget I think you are going to have a real cruising problem.
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Old 06-05-2015, 08:36   #11
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Re: Borrowed car responsibility

Quote:
Originally Posted by Zach View Post
Take the car to its brand car dealership, and ask the service manager if they would mind bringing in their paint guy that fixes the scratches and dents.

Most dealers have the number for the #1 or #2 best paintless dent removers in town, who also are trained in repairing and buffing back scratches.

Instead of $600, you'll probably spend $160. Plus a case of beer, if required.

Cheers,

Zach
I second this.
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Old 06-05-2015, 08:54   #12
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Re: Borrowed car responsibility

I say it's your responsibility. Think of what the situation would be if it was from a rental company.

They loan out cars for profit, but it your case it was a kindness gesture so shouldn't family be treated better? Would it have happened if the car had stayed in the garage? Of course not, so the damage resulted from your usage.

Then the question is what is a reasonable amount to pay. It really should be returned to the same condition as before you borrowed it. Some people may say "Oh don't bother .. it's not worth worrying about". But not so in this case.

As for the broken iPad, if they really did touch it, then the same rule should apply to them. Hard to prove they did so if they deny it. Maybe kids did? Do you really want to cause family rifts by pushing even if that's what they are doing to you?
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Old 06-05-2015, 09:20   #13
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Re: Borrowed car responsibility

Can't say for the US side of the pond but over in the UK you would have to ensure you were covered either on your own car insurance policy or on their policy for 3rd party liability before you even set out on the road, otherwise you would be guilty of driving without insurance.

By borrowing their car you accept full responsibility for it whilst it is in your care. So if the damage happened on your watch then you should suck it up and pay for the repair or at least agree to pay their deductible.

As for the iPad that seems a little bit petty to me, kind of "you broke my toy so I'll break yours" mentality. Again suck it up and claim on your personal possession insurance/home contents insurance and put it down to life being a bitch.

Moral of the story is make sure you have the proper cover before you borrow anything and accept that **** happens.

Keiron
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Old 06-05-2015, 09:45   #14
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Re: Borrowed car responsibility

Legally, you are probably just fine.
Morally and ethically, you are responsible. When you borrow something, anything, no matter its pre-existing condition, you are responsible.
That even goes for borrowing a 20 year old drill.

Especially if a friend or family member. If it burns out on your watch, you owe a replacement of equal quality when the old drill was new.
I'd go along with taking it to a body shop or dealer and have them touch-up and buff it out. This is what you should have offered when the subject first came up.


To answer your original question: is your sense of morals and right and wrong off?
I believe they are way off.


If he broke your IPAD, even though HE was wrong, no doubt about it, it's still your fault. The greatest damage is to the probable irreparable damage to family relationships. Was this worth $600?
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Old 06-05-2015, 09:49   #15
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Re: Borrowed car responsibility

Only YOU can make this decision.

But remember: Treat others the same way YOU would like to be treated.
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