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Your Rights

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Your Rights

Know Your rights

Department of Insurance

Your Rights To A Quality Repair

 

What should I do if I am involved in an accident?

No matter how minor, it is wise to report every accident to the police. Then, contact the registered collision repair shop of your choice. Your independent repair shop can assist you with the processing of your Insurance Claim, answer your questions, and advise you to ensure safe and proper repairs are made to your vehicle.

Do I have to take my vehicle to a drive-in claims center or get multiple estimates?

No! If you request it, your insurer must inspect the damage to your vehicle at your chosen collision repair shop rather than at their drive-in claims center or sending their mobile adjuster to you.  They are legally prohibited from coercing or using any steering tactics intended to prevent you from seeking damage estimates from your own body shop rather than their drive-in facility.  NOTE: It is not possible to write an accurate estimate at a "Drive-Through" estimating station - All vehicles must be dismantled (Torn-Down) to accurately determine the exact extent of damage inflicted to a vehicle.  The Insurers are required by LAW to do the estimate at the shop of YOUR choice and pay for a QUALITY repair as stipulated by the Department of Insurance while complying to Factory Standards as set out by the manufacturer.

Do I have to use a specific collision repair facility?

No! You have the absolute right to select the collision repair shop of your choice.  By Law you may not be forced or coerced by an Insurance Provider to take your vehicle to a shop of their choice or a shop that they have entered into a contract with.  

What is an Insurance DRP Shop?

"Insurance DRP Shops" also known as "Preferred Repair Shops" represent the insurance company.  These Body Shops have entered into a contract with insurance companies regarding the repairs, the rates and the repair procedures.  The insurance company sets the rules for the repair process and the repair shop simply follows them.  In many cases the savings are as a result of using alternative Non-OEM Parts that are simply a knock-off part that is inferior to factory parts.  Please note that NOT ALL Insurance Carriers condone this policy - You may need to call and verify what your Service Providers policy is with "Aftermarket Parts" (Non OEM).  New or used, these "Aftermarket Parts" may affect the quality, safety and thoroughness of the repair service.  Remember, you paid insurance premiums with expectations of a safe and quality repair.

Why should I choose my own collision repair facility rather than one suggested by the insurance company?

Your vehicle is possibly your second biggest investment.  There are compelling reasons to choose an independent, trusted repair shop that you know will make sure your vehicle is truly restored to its pre-accident condition.  Insurance appraisers work for the insurance company.  Independent auto collision repair facilities work directly for you.  They are looking out for your best interest and will act as your advocate in negotiating directly with the insurance company for the proper repairs so that your vehicle is safe for you and your family.  Independently owned body shops work hard at developing personal and lasting relationships with their customers.  Their focus is to earn their customers loyalty by providing quality repairs and personal service.  This is the reason why many of us always return back to the same mechanic.

What are imitation or non-OEM parts (Aftermarket Parts)?

Imitation parts (aka generic, aftermarket, quality replacement or non-original equipment manufacturer (None OEM)) are knockoff parts made by a company other than the manufacturer of your vehicle.  These parts are made to look like your original vehicle parts, but may never have been crash tested and are not covered under your vehicle manufacturer warranty.  In its February 1999 issue Consumer Reports, published the results of its extensive study of non-OEM parts. The cover story was entitled "Shoddy Auto Parts" which outlined concerns such as Bumpers that shatter, Parts that do not fit and fenders that rust.

An independent collision repair facility will help you negotiate with your insurance company for the appropriate original equipment manufacturer parts to maintain the integrity and value of your vehicle.

Who guarantees the workmanship for the repairs?

The repair facility is responsible for the quality of the workmanship.  If there is a concern, even with a facility selected by the insurance company, the facility itself is responsible.  Every collision repair shop registered as a Motor Vehicle Repair Shop with the California Bureau of Automotive Repair is responsible for safe and proper repairs.  If your insurance company claims they will not guarantee the repairs do NOT worry.  The repair facility must and will willingly support their repairs with a "Lifetime Warranty On All Labor Repairs" for as long as you own the vehicle, as required by law.

 

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