ROCHESTER, NY – Nearly 800 people in Rochester had their KIA or Hyundai vehicles stolen this year. One of the victims called KIA and continued to harass her about reimbursement. And this week, a KIA check arrived in the mail.
At the height of car thefts in February, Renee Hullett’s Kia was stolen from the parking lot of her apartment near East High.
The police found it, her agent fixed it and Hulett paid the $500 deductible. After some initial refusals, Hulett submitted all of her paperwork and proof and a month later KIA wrote her a check for $500.
“I felt like I was being heard because I was angry, so why should I, even though I have insurance, it’s not my fault,” she said. “Kia knows what’s going on and I feel they have to put it right.”
Brian: “Who told you about the possibility of getting a check here?”
Renee Howlett: “Matthews Kia Repair Man.”
Brian: “So the agent told you this.”
KIA and Hyundai both told me they may cover out-of-pocket costs on a “case-by-case” basis. On Monday, Mayor Malik Evans said the city will join eight others in suing both automakers.
“How was the whole experience of having your car stolen?” Howlett asked. “And what did he do to you?”
“I felt violated because I don’t bother anyone. I work every day. This is how I get back to work and sometimes my window to get from one job to another twice a week is only 30 minutes.” So I don’t have time to not have a car or wait for a ride. I need my car to go to work.
For months, after she had her Kia repaired, Howlett said she would constantly worry about her car and check it out the window day and night.
Brian: “This was taking your life.”
Howlett: “It was. It was so consuming I don’t know about anyone else but I just had to get rid of it because I couldn’t do it anymore.”
Hulett says it finally turned in its KIA for a different model.
Here are the documents Howlett needed:
– Police report
– Insurance policy
Proof that she paid the deducted amount.
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