Albuquerque, NM asked in Car Accidents for New Mexico

Q: see details on question of NM statue covering required level of repair to not at fault driver's car.

I was rear ended at a stop light, which was red. Other driver stopped, exchanged license/ insurance. There has been no argument as who's at fault. I have a 2019 Ford Edge, it was still under the 3 year/30,000 mile factory warrantee, only has 13,000 miles on it, absolutely no scratches/dents. Her car received substantial damage, radiator was broken and leaking water. At-fault driver's insurance wants to fix my damage sub-standardly, in my eyes, i.e. using bondo. I object on three stances. 1) If I sell the car it will be worthless, any knowledgeable buyer can knock on the car and hear the difference in sound of the bondo area (been through that), or use a magnet. I plan on keeping the car for more than 20 years (I have a 1988 Ford Ranger), and don't want problems in the future (cracks etc.). My ins. agent said if I have another accident in the future, bondo work will be evident, then that at-fault person's insurance can claim previous damage, not cover new damage even if greater.

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1 Lawyer Answer
Tim Akpinar
Tim Akpinar
  • Personal Injury Lawyer
  • Little Neck, NY

A: A New Mexico attorney could advise best, but your question remains open for two weeks. One option is to arrange a brief consult with a local attorney to discuss your choices under state-specific consumer/insurance law. A law firm would probably not handle something of this nature on a contingency if the scope of damages is roughly the difference between new panel(s) plus labor vs. bondo - the margin is probably too small. You could look into whether small claims or civil court on your own is your most economical option, unless there is provision for arbitration. Good luck

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