Friday, May 28, 2010

Only An Insurance Company Could Come Up With This

Family asked to pay for car damage after dog run over

A car insurer has asked a Canadian family to pay for repairing a broken bumper after their dog was struck by the vehicle and died, local media said Thursday.
The traffic accident occurred in March while Jake, a 12-year-old yellow Labrador, was out for his daily stroll around a quiet neighborhood in Aurora, Ontario, north of Toronto.
Kim Flemming had let the dog out when she arrived home from work. Moments later, a man knocked on the door to say a car had run over Jake.

"I got to the road and he was dying," Flemming told the Toronto Star. "He died in my arms."

Two months later, the family received a bill in the mail for 1,732.80 Canadian dollars (1,648.95 US) from State Farm Insurance.

The letter said Flemming had been found responsible for damage to the vehicle. "As such, we are looking to you for reimbursement," it reportedly stated.

State Farm spokesman John Bordignon told the Star: "They could have made sure their dog wasn't free on the roadway."

A local bylaw requires pets to be on a leash when off the owner's property, but the Flemmings said Jake had become accustomed to roaming outside the family's home.

State Farm was not immediately available for further comment.

"We've lost a member of our family but we're supposed to pay for the damage to her bumper? That's just wrong," daughter Katherine Flemming said.

I put insurance company executives on the bottom rung. The only thing below them is lawyers, down on the floor in the muck.


cliff said...

And next below are dog owners who let their pets run wild. Leash laws are a good thing.

Z said...

What a story!
of course, if they'd had American health care, maybe the dog would have lived :-)
But, seriously..poor dog ...

LomaAlta said...

Chuck, I have known too many people like this. They let their dogs run free in dangerous traffic and when one is killed they just get another one and repeat the entire sad sequence.

Some might not like it, but if you live in a town or county with a leash law, if you let your dog run free and you are breaking the law. Their dogs die, but they can always get another.

When it it time for people to respect the law and to accept responsibility for protecting their pets?

Chuck said...

I do feel for the dog and I do agree that they should follow the law but this is sleazy by the insurance company.

First, no one here knows the full circumstances. They said this is a quiet neighborhood. Do all of the neighbors let their dogs run loose to get exercise? I am not a huge fan of tying up dogs.

Were the people driving paying attention? Or speeding?

If this dog did $1700 damage to a car it was not a small dog. How did the driver not see it?

Z, nice ;)

Katie said...

Sorry, but I have to disagree. The idiot owner shouldn't be letting the dog run wild. I don't care how "quiet" the neighborhood is. There's a huge pyrnese that lives out on one of our country roads. I can't count the number of times I've nearly wrecked my van because that stupid dog comes barreling out of nowhere to chase me. You're damn right if I hit the stupid thing the owner will be paying to fix the damages, I don't care if it dies. And if one of kids is hurt, the owners will have a date with the metal baseball bat I keep in the van.

They chose to ignore the leash law and their dog died. It's their fault, and they're responsible for the damage to the vehicle. We have a little pug that I absolutely adore, he's definitely a member of the family, but I don't let him roam our "quiet" neighborhood, because I love him and want him to stay safe. People who let their dogs roam really piss me off. Twice I've been chased down on my own property by someone's "pwecious widdle angel" that was left free to roam. Our policy now is to shoot any dog that's on our property.

Chuck said...

Katie, personally, I don't care much for dogs one way or the other so I don't have a real stake in this. I do still believe though that we pay for insurance for our car, the insurance company can pay the claim.

What about the notion that we shouldn't be having the government tell us what to do with our lives, or our pets?

Now obviously if a dog is harassing you in your yard the owner should have to face consequences but why is this okay for governmental regulation?

cliff said...

Government at it's most basic is just people getting along. Or not getting along, as the case may be. You own a dog, it's your responsibility. Unfortunately, not everyone is responsible. That is why people (govt) must tell other people (citizens) what constitutes good manners and responsible behavior. Hope this helps.