After an auto accident, one of the biggest concerns people have is getting their automobile repaired. Your insurance company will likely have a body shop or few repair facilities that it recommends you to use for the repairs. If the damage is really bad, they may want to have your car towed to a particular facility from the scene of the accident.
You may wonder if you have to use the body shop your insurance company recommends? After all, they are the ones paying the bill. However, as a consumer, you may be surprised to find out that you have more control over this aspect of the process than you might have thought.
Can I Choose My Own Repair Shop?
Yes. Insurance companies often have contracts with particular auto body repair shops. These
contracts give them lower rates and certain benefits, such as lifetime warranties, in exchange
for referring customers to the shop for repairs. These arrangements mean that insurance
companies may pay less for the same repairs as they would at other repair shops. Because of
this, insurance adjusters will often try to push certain repair shops and dissuade you from going
elsewhere. They may cite longer repair times and an inability to guarantee the work as reasons
not to go to a different body shop.
However, the law usually allows consumers to choose their own body shop, regardless of any agreement between the insurance company and other repair shops. Despite what your insurance company may tell you, choosing a repair shop other than the ones your insurance recommends does not have to mean a reduced quality of repair or a loss of lifetime warranty.
Repair shops depend on their reputation to get continued business, so they have a vested interest in delivering quality repair work. In addition, many body shops provide a lifetime warranty as a standard practice of their business, regardless of whether insurance pays or not. Many companies also have familiarity with the claims process and the local insurance company adjusters, meaning they will be able to handle the process just as well as any other shop recommended by the insurance company.
How Do I Choose the Best Repair Shop After a Car Accident?
Insurance companies have usually vetted the body shops they recommend to ensure the quality of repair is up to their standards. Choosing your own repair shop may mean you have to do a bit of research on your own, but it is very easy to ensure that you get a quality repair at any auto shop you choose. Go to a few different places to get a quote for repairs, and ask questions while there. A few factors to consider when choosing a repair shop:
• How long has the repair shop been in business?
• Has the shop worked on your specific type of car or repaired the kind of damage to
your car before?
• Do they have experience working with your insurance company?
• Does their work come with a lifetime guarantee?
• Will the estimate likely go up after work has begun?
What about my deductible? Will they waive the deductible?
Asking these questions can ensure that you get a quality repair no matter where you go. Whether you choose an insurance-recommended repair shop or opt to find your own, having a measure of control over this process can ensure that you get a repair job that you can feel satisfied with and get back on the road as soon as possible.
Contact Lebovitz Law Group for Help with Your Car Accident!
If you have been in a car accident that caused injury or property damage, you need a trusted personal injury law firm to handle your case and make sure you get what you are entitled to. The expert accident lawyers at Lebovitz Law Group have experience helping accident victims get the recovery they need to pay expenses and recover from an accident. Our firm negotiates with defense teams, insurance companies, and anybody else who may try to give you less than what is fair. Contact the Lebovitz Law Group today for any questions or to schedule a consultation.