Insurance Company Asked Accident
Victim's Family To Repair Car That
The Huffington Post | By Anthonia Akitunde Posted: 10/16/2012
A New York woman was still reeling from the death of her 71-year-old mother -- tragically struck
by a car as she crossed the street -- when she received a letter from the driver’s insurance
company. A note of condolence, perhaps? Not quite: The company demanded the woman pay
more than $6,000 for damages to the 2012 BMW that killed her mother.
Daniel Flanzig, attorney for the victim's daughter, Monica, who asked that her last name not
be used, told The Huffington Post, “this was not just a form letter issued by an insurance
company, but rather a conscious decision by the company to get their money back from this
family for the damage to their insured's vehicle, damage that was caused by striking and killing
"I was shocked," Monica told the New York Post, adding, "she wasn't just my mom, she was my
best friend." Anna Cedeno, a retired seamstress and grandmother of four, was killed in April in
Westbury, NY, while headed to a bus on her way home from Costco. The driver, physical
therapist Sherrie Glasser-Mayrsohn, stayed on the scene and was not charged in the
death, Newsday reported. Officials laid blame on Cedeno for not crossing at a crosswalk or a
traffic light. Nevertheless, Monica contacted Flanzig to sue Glasser-Mayrsohn for negligence.
But before a lawsuit could be filed, she received a letter from PURE, the driver's insurance
company, five months after Cedeno's death: “Our investigation shows that your client was
responsible for the accident,” the letter began. "We now look forward to your client’s estate for
payment of the damages to our policyholder’s vehicle." The payment? $6,245.09.
When questioned about the letter by a Post reporter, PURE replied:
“Our sympathies go out to the family and loved ones of Ms. Cedeno ....We acknowledge that a
letter was written and sent by an otherwise excellent claims professional ... that created the
impression that reimbursement would be pursued even if there was no applicable insurance.
This runs counter to our position, and [the claims professional] should not have written the
But Flanzig -- who says he hasn't received this response from PURE -- isn't swayed by the
explanation. "You would think that any reasonable and sympathetic company would leave this
one alone and accept it as a loss and not try to collect from a grieving family," he told The