At ABC Body Shop, we realize that insurance companies need to keep the cost of repairing your vehicle as low as possible. There are quality insurance companies that offer direct repair programs designed not only to keep down costs, but to also facilitate the best wishes of their customers. We have contracted with premium companies that give the advantage to you the customer. These insurance companies are top rated with the consumer, and these direct repair relationships work.
There are also Insurance companies that are more concerned with the cost of repairs than they are with quality, or what is best for the customer. They can resort to tactics that can snag the unaware consumer into a poor quality repair that can haunt them for years to come. Don't let this happen to you. Check with reliable sources like JD Power and Associates to determine if what they are saying is in your best interests or theirs.
To help keep you informed, we have listed some of the misleading tactics that some insurance companies use to get you to go to a shop where they are the customer and not you. If any of these statements have been said to you by the insurance company handling your claim, beware.
1. "They are not one of our network shops and they are not on our list, we can't guarantee the repairs."
We are not on everybody's list, that is because we do not want to be. We identify the vehicle owner as our primary customer, not the insurance company. As for guaranteeing our work, although this can be an added bonus to you with a reputable insurance company, they do not need to. As a NAPA Car Care Collision Shop we participate in our own nationwide lifetime guarantee. Wherever you are in the US, take it to the nearest NAPA Collision Center, Automotive Center or call their toll-free number, and they will see to it that the problem is solved. On the other hand, when have you ever seen an insurance company with a car being repaired in their office? Truth is they will send you back to whomever you selected off their list.
2. "If you use them, we can't get an adjuster out for several days, if you take it to our network shop we will have someone start on it right away."
This is just another ploy to steer you, we have heard insurance companies tell our customers how busy they are and they can't get someone out for up to 7 or 8 days when we know their staff appraisers have little to do. Most companies are required to appraise a vehicle within 72 hrs.
3. "If you use that shop you will have to pay for your rental out of pocket."
This is not true, but some insurance companies will try to force you into a rental reimbursement, which means they will either try to get you to pay with a credit card and then reimburse you, or offer to send check for x amount of rental days. Remember, if you have purchased rental car coverage, the insurance company has contracted with you to pay all rental cost necessary. If you have a liability claim, Arizona State Law requires the insurance company to pay all reasonable costs incurred by the loss. Most companies have direct bill agreements with rental companies, but they do not always disclose that. Always remember as a claimant against a company, that you also have specific rights that a policyholder may not have.
4. "They charge more than the prevailing rate and you will have to pay the difference in repair cost."
There are very few cases where we have charged a customer the difference between what the actual cost were and what the insurance company was willing to pay. We will say that each customer collected the difference from the insurance company after giving sufficient proof of why certain costs are involved. We will handle any additional costs related to your repair directly with the insurance company paying the bill. The laws state that the insurance company must pay the cost of repairs as long as they are reasonable and competitive. Sometimes when there are discrepancies in the repair cost because a carrier is trying to force us to do something that is not in your best interest. In the rare case that we cannot come to an agreement with the Insurance company, we can assist you in filing the complaint with the State Department of Insurance. It is a simple form that we will fill out for you and e-mail it.
5. "Claims take longer to settle if you use them."
Well, we do look after everything for you, including making rental car arrangements and dealing with the appraiser. The only thing that can take longer is that they can, in some cases, be slow to respond when asked to pay for everything involved in getting you back on the road. ABC Body Shop has a very good relationship with nearly all the insurance companies we have worked with. In most cases, we are able to take care of any differences without delaying the repair process. In the rare occasions that this may occur, there have been no additional rental expenses paid by the customer.
These are just a few of the word tracks used to manipulate the customer into using a specific repair facility. Be careful! it's your vehicle, your investment, you have the right to make the choice on who repairs it.
We would be more than happy to assist you in the claims process. The truth is we work with about every company out there, more importantly we do not lose sight of who the customer is. We realize the investment that you have in your vehicle, and we want to make sure the value of your investment is not diminished through poor quality repairs. Some insurance companies rely on the numerical fact that you will not keep your vehicle very long, so they are not as concerned about the quality of your repairs as opposed to saving claim dollars.