Car Followup

Mom’s neighbor emailed me with the following,, regarding repairs to his wife’s car that mom hit:
Well it came in at $600 even. I called your mom and told her about it. She let me tell her about the estimate and her comment was “what happened to the car?” I had to tell her it was because she had hit it a few days ago at the bank. She said she had forgotten all about it. Next comment was it sounded high, then, did she have to pay it all at once.

I responded:

I talked with mom (a lot) this late afternoon. Mostly about dental stuff, but she did mention that you’d let her know what the cost for the repair was (“for two small creases on the door”). She also told me it was expensive. I told her that today car panels are simply removed and replaced. No one repairs them anymore. She seemed to understand that (lots of logic is still intact), but then said, “Why doesn’t Jim use his insurance?” I replied, “Mom, it’d be your insurance that gets used. You hit Karen. You have to decide if you want to go that route. It will go on your record.” She took that in without pushback. Funny thing is that she told me the dental stuff she was having done was, wait for it, $600!! I think she’s confusing things. 

INSIST that she pay you all at once!!!! You have to pay it all at once! If she gives you a line of shit about not having the funds, tell her 1) you’ll call her insurance agent to handle it (Gloria at Isla Insurance – takes the accounts receivable off of your plate. Mom will have to pay her insurance carrier!), and/or 2) say you’ll ask me to intervene. 
Jim and Tim have both encouraged me to get mom into a smaller car. Her hard pushback is that we’ll need the van to get her moved back to the Island, and she needs the height of the van to take garbage cans to the dump. I’m at a point where I can tell her that we DO NOT need her minivan to accomplish this task, and I’m on the Island enough, with my 3/4 ton full size truck, that we can make dump runs when she needs to (No garbage pick up where she lives).

My husband is driving a well loved, and cared for, 2001 Subaru with 200K miles on it. He wants to upgrade to Subaru’s latest AWD hybrid. I see an opportunity here. Mom could have his car, which is more her size, AWD, (which she really needs), and enables the elderly Subaru to retire to a low mileage situation that will expand its lifetime horizons. 

One daily step at a time.

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