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Victim Tax: Driver on the hook for nearly $9,000 repair after hit-and-runner hits her uninsured parked car

Toronto, Ontario — What was intended as a frugal decision after an unfortunate accident has left a Scarborough mother with a nearly $9,000 repair bill after her parked car was damaged in a hit-and-run.

After a former boyfriend wrecked her 2021 Hyundai Sonata and left her with the $1,000 insurance premium increase that resulted, Shanise Richardson decided the best course of action at the time was to just cancel her insurance and leave the car in her apartment building’s parking lot.

“That’s too much money for me. I have two little kids so I couldn’t afford it,” Richardson told CTV.

She says that her car took a significant amount of damage when, at some point last summer, the driver of a white Lexus lost control in the parking lot and struck her vehicle.

The driver did leave a note on Richardson’s windshield promising to pay for the damage, however, she says he quickly cut off all communication and left her with a $8,600 repair bill.

“I’m stuck having to basically pay for my own damage even though technically the accident wasn’t my fault,” she said.

Being as there is currently no real way to protect an uninsured vehicle in a situation like this, Ratehub.ca’s v-p of insurance, Matt Hands, told CTV that despite the cost of services like comprehensive insurance, “what it affords you, is worth the cost.”

“You have collision insurance which protects your vehicle while you’re driving it and you have comprehensive coverage which protects it while it’s parked. Comprehensive insurance will offer coverage in case the car is vandalized, stolen or someone runs into it,” he said.

Richardson says that while she is now working hard to save money to cover the repairs, she wishes she had known about comprehensive coverage when she decided to put her vehicle in storage.

“I wanted to cry. I’ve learned a big lesson about the situation and comprehensive insurance,” she said.

With parts shortages straining repair turnarounds in collision facilities across the country, drivers trying to sort out what to do with their damaged vehicles ought to take special notice of cases like this and protect themselves accordingly, should they decide to put their vehicle in storage or cancel their insurance policy altogether.

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