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Old 04.06.2011, 17:45
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Damage caused by car park

An unusual one this one.. We discovered recently that some water dripping from the ceiling above a parking place in our building's garage was leaving a deposit of some sort on our car. We stopped using the offending car parking space and cleaned off the deposits. Unfortunately they left behind some nasty stains in the metallic paintwork of our almost new car.

Our insurers say that our car park insurance only covers us against damage from other cars and so this would have to be covered by the Kaskoversicherung with a whopping excess of 1000CHF.

It seemed a bit unfair to me that we would have to pay 1'000CHF for this especially when we subsequently found out that our neighbours car was also damaged and the car park operators duly informed. We informed the car park operators again about the stalagtites dripping calcium deposits onto cars below and about our desire for them to take on the costs for the repairs (3'500CHF quoted by AMAG). They have come back, after 2 months of going back and for between the car park operators and owners, and informed us that we cannot prove that their building is at fault and so they won't pay. They still felt compelled to attach a container to the car park ceiling to catch the dripping deposits though.

Do I have any chance of pursuing the car park for these costs without spending thousands on legal fees or should I just write off the 1'000CHF and go through the insurance company?

By the way, I thought I might have a chance of calling this vandalism since the car park knew about the issue earlier and failed to act on it. I have 0 excess for vandalism but my insurance conditions state:
"Vandalism PLUS All motor vehicles: This option covers all damage caused willfully or maliciously by
third parties, except for loss or damage while the vehicle is parked."
So it seems the car has to be on the move whilst being vandalised for this insurance option to be worth anything!!?!!
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Old 04.06.2011, 17:48
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Re: Damage caused by car park

Take a baseball bat and bludgeon hell out of the car show it to the insurance company and say see what came down from the sky!

Last edited by jacek; 04.06.2011 at 18:33.
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Old 04.06.2011, 17:51
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Re: Damage caused by car park

Ask them why they felt the need to fit the container if there was no issue.
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Old 04.06.2011, 17:56
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Re: Damage caused by car park

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it seems the car has to be on the move whilst being vandalised for this insurance option to be worth anything!!?!!
I guess that in CH vandals are more energetic?

Tom
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Old 04.06.2011, 18:03
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Re: Damage caused by car park

why does it have to be your insurance that pays for it? What about the building management company's insurance? it was their faulty pipes that damaged your car.

I once had a similar predicament. water dripped onto the car parked in a garage under my apartment leaving an mineral deposit. I took it to the garage and they cleaned it off with some special stuff and it only cost me like $100 out of my pocket.
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Old 04.06.2011, 21:17
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Re: Damage caused by car park

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why does it have to be your insurance that pays for it? What about the building management company's insurance? it was their faulty pipes that damaged your car.
That's what seems to make the most sense to me as well. The building owners are saying that I can't prove the deposits came from their ceiling and not from some other car park...

I don't know if some chemical boffin could match the deposits still left on my roof rack with the stalactites still hanging from the ceiling but I would hope that the facts that:
  1. it is where we leave our car every night
  2. the location of the damage matches the position of the stalactites
would be proof enough for the insurers.

If this was the UK I'd take them to the small claims court but not sure if there is an equivalent here.
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Old 04.06.2011, 21:48
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Re: Damage caused by car park

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That's what seems to make the most sense to me as well. The building owners are saying that I can't prove the deposits came from their ceiling and not from some other car park...

I don't know if some chemical boffin could match the deposits still left on my roof rack with the stalactites still hanging from the ceiling but I would hope that the facts that:
  1. it is where we leave our car every night
  2. the location of the damage matches the position of the stalactites
would be proof enough for the insurers.

If this was the UK I'd take them to the small claims court but not sure if there is an equivalent here.
my jaw is agape at the idea that they're not concerned about a maintenance issue.

Take pictures, your car parked there, stalagtites hanging down.... I believe it should be enough evidence to prove it wasn't at some other carpark.

are you paying extra to park there?
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Old 05.06.2011, 00:41
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Re: Damage caused by car park

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That's what seems to make the most sense to me as well. The building owners are saying that I can't prove the deposits came from their ceiling and not from some other car park...

I don't know if some chemical boffin could match the deposits still left on my roof rack with the stalactites still hanging from the ceiling but I would hope that the facts that:
  1. it is where we leave our car every night
  2. the location of the damage matches the position of the stalactites
would be proof enough for the insurers.

If this was the UK I'd take them to the small claims court but not sure if there is an equivalent here.
It seems to me that you have sufficient evidence to make a claim against the building owners (who will pass it on to their insurers).

In the first instance you could try writing a letter to them, with the facts set out as above and some photos.

However, they will probably take a lot more notice if you get a lawyer to represent you in this matter. If you win, you get your lawyer's fees back. But I agree that the amount at stake (CHF 1000) is tricky because it is never 100% sure of you will win such cases and the lawyer will cost you probably CHF 400 to CHF 600. Try to get one act for a fixed fee.

Probably the easiest route is to find a cheaper repair option (unless it's too late for that).
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Old 05.06.2011, 01:46
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Re: Damage caused by car park

asloca perhaps, they might lead you in the right direction. first consultation is free I believe.

Have a insurance claim made up by company and cash the money. tons of products out there that will get rid of it. Just for the principle that they do not want to admit fault I would take this all the way.

btw here is one solution

and yes this works but I do not know if it is available in europe......

also any polish should do the trick. I think they are ripping you a good one with the quote.....
do you have pics
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Old 28.06.2011, 22:48
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Re: Damage caused by car park

Quick update on this one. Got another quote for the repair which was significantly lower than AMAG so went ahead and got it repaired. No respraying needed and CHF250 sorted it out. As a matter of principle I'm still going to try and get this money back from the building owners. Registered letter going off in the post tomorrow with plenty of photos and my bank details. Let's see if that works.

Thanks for all the useful replies.
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Old 28.06.2011, 22:52
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Re: Damage caused by car park

should've pursued them first or gone the deductionless parking damage route - the car was not running, unoccupied and thus parking damage applies.
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Old 28.06.2011, 23:09
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Re: Damage caused by car park

Tried parking damage but was shown the small print where it excludes unwillful damage caused by something other than a bike or a car..

"Parking damage
Damage to a parked vehicle which was caused by an unknown motor vehicle or bicycle is covered. In addition, willful or malicious damage caused by third parties is also insured."
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Old 29.06.2011, 11:01
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Re: Damage caused by car park

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"Vandalism PLUS All motor vehicles: This option covers all damage caused willfully or maliciously by
third parties, except for loss or damage while the vehicle is parked.
I can already imagine the kids with their paint sprays standing on the continuous line of the highway, just waiting for the right moment to make their tags on a 120km/h vehicle...
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Old 27.01.2012, 11:11
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Re: Damage caused by car park

Quick update:

I managed to get 200CHF out of Wincasa after much going back and forth. I then handed in my notice and got a cheaper parking space round the corner.
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