Sometimes it doesn’t pay to be nice, especially when it comes to car accidents. Two weeks ago, someone crunched the front left corner of my car as they were swerving out of the way to let another car go by on our very narrow street. Despite what I’m sure was a strong urge to drive away, “C” left an extremely apologetic note on my wind shield. When I contacted him, he didn’t gripe or try to get me to let him off the hook. Instead, he was pleasant and contrite and totally responsible about contacting his insurance company to claim fault for the accident. Car issues are never fun, but C’s neighborliness made the incident much less stressful--until the car insurance company had its say.
Because the damage to my car was appraised at more than $500, C will lose his safe driver rating and have to pay about $2000 in increased insurance premiums over the next two years. I’m all for penalizing unsafe drivers but this kind of rule only encourages hit and run accidents. If C hadn’t left me a note, he wouldn’t be getting slammed with 3 points on his license. He’s basically getting punished for being a good guy and that’s a shame.