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Auto insurance claim question

Old 09-14-2015, 04:54 PM
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Default Auto insurance claim question

I was involved in a accident last week (wasn't my fault). I thought my car would be totaled but now it appears they may fix it. I got today letting me know I'd be receiving the appraisal/estimate and check in the mail shortly.

The letter basically gives me 4 options.

1.) Use their direct payment check at one of their referral shops

2.) Cash the direct payment check and have the repairs done at any shop of my choice.

3.) Choose not to participate in the direct payment/referral program by returning the check and take the car to a shop of my choice.

4.) Keep the check and don't have the vehicle repaired (not an option)

If I choose option 2 or 3 they include a disclaimer stating the won't guarantee anything and they may not cover any additional costs.

That sound like scare tactic shit to me.

I was thinking option 3, taking the car to someone I know and trust (not on their list). At that point I would think they would work with the insurance adjuster and if the estimate is lacking in some way it should be adjusted to cover whatever needs to be done to make the car whole again. Am I missing something here?

This whole process sucks.
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Old 09-14-2015, 05:13 PM
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I had a claim...used one of the companies preferred shops (dealer's body shop). Over a year later it became obvious that the original shop made a pretty serious omission (accidental I'm sure, and it could have happened to anyone). The insurance company took care of it, without question or hassle and it wasn't a cheap fix. That would probably NOT have been the case had I gone out on my own.

The shops that do work for the insurance companies don't want to screw up the gravy train...they'll do as quality of work as the next guy (other than maybe some custom shop or something). Make this the insurance companies problem, not yours... Take option 1 unless you have a really compelling reason not to.
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Old 09-14-2015, 05:35 PM
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Go with their preferred shop in case you have additional problems after you get the car back. The shops they use are trustworthy and are as good as any high volume shop. The insurance companies mo is not to skimp on repairs but rather to deny claims when possible. Once they decide to pay you're usually in the clear.
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Old 09-14-2015, 05:44 PM
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Been there. Shop I chose (a Pontiac dealer) either left the clear off my hood or screwed it up. After less than a year it turned to crap and they said tough. Do what flyau98 said, make it THEIR problem.
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Old 09-14-2015, 05:49 PM
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I hadn't thought about it this way. I guess I will re-evaluate. I was thinking the car should go to the Acura dealer but maybe that is a mistake. I kinds wish it was totaled, I found my replacement car this morning.

Thanks the insight guys.
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Old 09-14-2015, 06:05 PM
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don't forget diminished value


edit I thought all body shops gave lifetime guarantees
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Old 09-14-2015, 06:12 PM
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don't forget diminished value
I know this is a reality for any vehicle involved in an accident but how can this be avoided?
Are you saying I should be compensated for it above the repair? if so, I like how you think.
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Old 09-14-2015, 06:17 PM
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Originally Posted by GH02050 View Post
how can this be avoided, are you saying I should be compensated for it above the repair? if so, I like how you think.
yes, if it was nearly totaled you can get an extra $5,000.00 just by mentioning small claims court (I did in Texas anyway)

some people get more than that?
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Old 09-14-2015, 06:32 PM
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Choice is yours Go talk to your friend The insurance company is not the one giving the guarantee it's the body shop unless they belly up it's not a big deal. I handle a lot of insurance work for my customers and I have 1 shop I deal with. I do not care who the insurance co is. A good shop will back their work without any question.
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Old 09-14-2015, 07:31 PM
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Have your buddy look at the estimate and see if everything is in line. A lot of the guys writing estimates for an insurance company have never worked in a body shop.

Just a little background, I've never worked in a body shop and wrote plenty of estimates when I worked as an adjuster.
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Old 09-14-2015, 08:17 PM
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Originally Posted by baypro21 View Post
Go with their preferred shop in case you have additional problems after you get the car back. The shops they use are trustworthy and are as good as any high volume shop. The insurance companies mo is not to skimp on repairs but rather to deny claims when possible. Once they decide to pay you're usually in the clear.
Sorry but you're wrong on prefered shop status. Preferred shops get that by playing ball with the insurance companies not by doing exceptional work for their clients who own the cars. Preferred shops clients are the insurance companies. Google Louisiana body shops suit against insurance companies.
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Old 09-14-2015, 08:35 PM
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This is the other party's insurance?

What year and make/model car? You don't have to get specific but what is it worth pre crash (realistically) and what is the estimate to repair?
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Old 09-15-2015, 05:22 AM
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Originally Posted by GH02050 View Post
I hadn't thought about it this way. I guess I will re-evaluate. I was thinking the car should go to the Acura dealer but maybe that is a mistake. I kinds wish it was totaled, I found my replacement car this morning.

Thanks the insight guys.
You can always take the check, sell the car as is, and use the funds to go buy the one you just found.
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Old 09-15-2015, 05:43 AM
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The car is/was a 2007 Acura TL in excellent condition with 154k on it. I think the value is about 10k but the ins. co could go as low as $8500. I was not at fault but I'm not sure if this has been officially determined yet. What is so infuriating about that is a traffic video camera (not a stop light cam) at that intersection captured the accident and it would 100% prove my version of the story BUT the ins. company says the wont go after that evidence (that is bullshit). Anyway the other driver is at fault so in the end (I hope) it will be his insurance that pays but it's my insurance co that deals with them.

As far as not repairing the car I guess I have to see what they are offing (the check) but I don't see this as real an option. I think if I fixed it then sold it,I'd make out better.

I really want the car I found and I think I'm going to buy it today and let this other shit sort itself out over time. If I'm not rushed to get it back I think I can focus more on getting the insurance companies to make this right. If I have to drag them into court, I will.

What kills me about this whole scenario is that NO ONE in this process seems working on my behalf, My insurance co. tells me I have to chase the other for a rent a car because I don't have it on my poilcy... WTF is that all about? Should my ins. agent get this from them?

When this is all said and done if the process continues they way it has I am going to move all of my policies (4 cars, boat trailer, & motorcycle) to GIECO or some other cheap internet company. I ask myself ..Why am I paying more and still getting shitty service?
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Old 09-15-2015, 05:54 AM
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As mentioned, tell them you want them to forward you the claim form for diminished value. Even if your car is restored to the condition it was in prior to the accident, the value will be significantly diminished due to the accident history (on carfax, insurance databases, etc). You are fully entitled to be compensated for this diminished value -- it is money taken right out of your pocket.

When my car was near-totalled and they were going to repair it, I pushed the diminished value claim and they suddenly decided to total the vehicle and send me a check for the full value.
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Old 09-15-2015, 06:18 AM
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Originally Posted by GH02050 View Post
The car is/was a 2007 Acura TL in excellent condition with 154k on it. I think the value is about 10k but the ins. co could go as low as $8500. I was not at fault but I'm not sure if this has been officially determined yet. What is so infuriating about that is a traffic video camera (not a stop light cam) at that intersection captured the accident and it would 100% prove my version of the story BUT the ins. company says the wont go after that evidence (that is bullshit). Anyway the other driver is at fault so in the end (I hope) it will be his insurance that pays but it's my insurance co that deals with them.

As far as not repairing the car I guess I have to see what they are offing (the check) but I don't see this as real an option. I think if I fixed it then sold it,I'd make out better.

I really want the car I found and I think I'm going to buy it today and let this other shit sort itself out over time. If I'm not rushed to get it back I think I can focus more on getting the insurance companies to make this right. If I have to drag them into court, I will.

What kills me about this whole scenario is that NO ONE in this process seems working on my behalf, My insurance co. tells me I have to chase the other for a rent a car because I don't have it on my poilcy... WTF is that all about? Should my ins. agent get this from them?

When this is all said and done if the process continues they way it has I am going to move all of my policies (4 cars, boat trailer, & motorcycle) to GIECO or some other cheap internet company. I ask myself ..Why am I paying more and still getting shitty service?
If your car is not financed you have the choice of having the car repaired. If the car is financed you must have it repaired unless you work something out with the finance co. If you don't carry a coverage then your insurance company cannot try to collect or fight the other company for that coverage. Your insurance co is not a law firm and cannot fight for coverage's that they don't provide. If the other insurance company has not picked up liability then they are not going to provide a rental car until they do so. Why isn't your insurance company going after the video?
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Old 09-15-2015, 06:20 AM
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NJ Insurance agent here...

I suggest using their preferred body shop, because as mentioned, the work should be guaranteed. The body shop working with the insurance company may have the lower price, but they want to keep a cash cow happy. Do good work with no further complaints and hassles as far as reopening claims for supplemental payments, and the insurance company will continue to send business their way.
Years ago, we actually asked (and was granted) for a certain body shop to be removed as a preferred vendor. Too many issues coming back from them, be it for poor customer service to bad workmanship.

As for bringing the car into the dealership, most of the time, there is no reason to bring it back to the dealer. People get paranoid, "they are going to void my warranty if I don't get the work done there!" And its just not true. Maybe some mechanical stuff, but body work, broken windshields etc, are more expensive at the dealer. And most of the time, the dealer isn't doing the work. They subcontract it out to the local guy, put it on their paper, then add 10%-15% to the bill.
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Old 09-15-2015, 06:33 AM
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Why isn't your insurance company going after the video?
My ins. agent stated that they (Boston / MA) won't provide the footage unless unless there was a death or serious injury. I don't believe this. I think it's more about time, effort and money but how can I prove that? What is my recourse if they decide to say this was a no-fault or worse my fault accident? The evidence they are clearly ignoring would prove what happened.
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Old 09-15-2015, 06:33 AM
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I'm also an agent and I prefer my customers to take their cars to a preferred shop so if there is a problem we can help. I can say we have some of the best local mom and pop shops in the area, dealerships, and other shops as pro shops. If a customer has a problem (which does happen) we can help resolving any issues. If the customer chooses a shop of their choice then its between them and the body shop.
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Old 09-15-2015, 06:35 AM
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Originally Posted by GH02050 View Post
My ins. agent stated that they (Boston / MA) won't provide the footage unless unless there was a death or serious injury. I don't believe this. I think it's more about time, effort and money but how can I prove that? What is my recourse if they decide to say this was a no-fault or worse my fault accident? The evidence they are clearly ignoring would prove what happened.
Well if your agent is telling you that then make a call to Boston/MA and find out if that's true.
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