Vandalism – who pays ?: When the car is willfully damaged

              Tuesday, 03. December 2019

              One comes to the car in the morning and is frightened: a long and deep scratch runs along the driver's door and on the bonnet someone has immortalized himself with bright color. How do you react now?
              Scratched paint, broken windows, broken lights: A car can still be well cared for and cared for, it is never immune from wanton damage. The workshops register more of such repair orders. "All in all, we are seeing an increase in vandalism damage," confirms Markus Herrmann of Bundesverband Fahrzeugaufbereitung (BFA), which organizes smart repair specialists. The range of damage is great. Under vandalism damage such as wanton paint scratches, punctured tires but also broken antennas or damaged discs summarized, as traffic lawyer Daniela Mielchen says Hamburg. She advises to report such cases immediately. For example, anyone who comes to his car parked in the street in the morning and thus finds damage should immediately take photos and inform the police. Sören Heinze of the Auto Club Europa (ACE) names one more reason for switching on the police: even if the polluter does not investigate full damage insurance covers most vandalism damage covers most vandalism damage only by a comprehensive insurance. However, broken tires do not regulate them. However, the Teilkasko takes over glass damage such as a broken glass or a smashed light cover. Motorists should check before the regulation by the insurance, however, how high the amount of damage. "For minor damage, it may make sense to eliminate them at their own expense," says Mielchen, "because the increase in the insurance premium and the payment of excess, which often lies between 150 and 300 euros, can ultimately have more expensive." Offenders liable And if the offender is found and you can prove his guilt? Then take his liability insurance, so Mielchen. If the offender is not insured, he can be held liable – that is: You can try to claim damages. If the car in a private parking lot as in a parking garage, this does not automatically mean that the operator in case of damage by third parties can be held liable , Mielchen explains: "As a rule, only leases are agreed here which involve the provision of a parking space, and liability could only be assumed if the conditions of the contract were agreed." To reduce repair costs, motorists can use the possibilities offered by Smart Repair ask. "Often it is not necessary to replace the entire fender or the entire bonnet, in order to remove small dents or scratches," explains industry representative Markus Herrmann. Before demos, it would be better to park the car. If you park your car in public, it can only provide limited protection against vandalism , But it helps, to look more closely, where to turn off the car. Sören Heinze from the ACE advises: "If possible, you should not park your car in lonely places." There, potential perpetrators run less risk of being discovered. Ideal are parking areas, which are well visible to residents. Reaction should motorists, if, for example, a demonstration is announced. If you leave your car in such an area, you may be at the cost of a vandalism damage, says Daniela Mielchen: "The insurance company will ask why the car was parked there and possibly refuse to pay due to a breach of duty." What a benefit offers a camera surveillance in the car? This is certainly helpful, Mielchen estimates. However, it is questionable whether such recordings would be admitted in a procedure as evidence, so the specialist lawyer. Because: "Basically, the Federal Court views video recordings of Dashcams as inadmissible." (Az .: VI ZR 233/17). It is usually weighed in individual cases, whether the interest of the recording or the privacy of the filmed prevail. The best protection against vandalism is vigilance. "This does not only apply to your own car, but also to others," says Sören Heinze. Anyone who observes that a vehicle is damaged should make a note of the location and time and call the police immediately.

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