How Do I Choose A Collision Repair Facility?
As the owner of a motor vehicle involved in an accident or submitting an insurance claim, you have the right to choose the shop where you wish to have your vehicle repaired. No law requires you to get more than one estimate, nor are you obligated to have your vehicle repaired at the "cheapest" shop or one "preferred" by the insurance company. You should select a repair facility based on their skill, service, knowledge, reputation and guarantee of their workmanship.
Remember, the body shop is fixing YOUR vehicle for YOU. If you're making an insurance claim, the insurer pays the bill, but most states prohibit the insurer from requiring you to use a particular shop -- that means, ultimately, no matter what you hear, THE BODY SHOP IS YOUR CHOICE.
What Is A DRP Body Shop?
Direct Repair Program (DRP) is another name for an insurance company's listing of shops, such as: State Farm's "Service First", Allstate's "PRO", Progressive's "Total Pro or Concierge", etc. DRP repair facilities have been solicited by the insurance company which sends customers their way in exchange for discounted repairs, such as lower labor rates or parts discounts. The consumer is not required or obligated to use a DRP repair facility.
Automotive Specialties made a decision many years ago to decline any DRP contracts which allows us to work WITH all insurance companies but work FOR our customer.
Must I Notify My Insurance Company Before Repairs?
Yes, insurance policies require that you notify the company and tell them where the damaged vehicle may be inspected. The insurance company may wish to send an adjustor of their choice to inspect the vehicle or review the shop's estimate prior to repair.
Who Pays The Repair Bill?
You must arrange for payment. Your insurance policy states the insurance company will pay for repairs less any deductibles or depreciation.
What If Repair Costs Exceed The Original Estimate?
Often times in the collision repair process additional damages are found resulting in more labor and parts needed to restore the vehicle to pre-accident condition. Parts sometimes come in at higher prices than quoted. These additional charges are called a supplement and will be covered by the insurance company with supporting paperwork from the repair facility.
If There Is A Problem With The Repair Job, Who Should You Contact?
First, contact the manager of the repair shop. If your problem is not resolved, contact your insurance company claims manager.