SHOULD I USE THE INSURANCE COMPANY’S BODY SHOPS AFTER AN ACCIDENT?
After an accident, to get your car repaired, you may be presented with the choice to use either an insurance company recommended body shop or choose one on your own. While the choice is entirely up to the consumer, it should be noted that the advantages of using an insurance company’s selected shop may outweigh the disadvantages for several key reasons.
1. If you use the insurance company shop, it might be faster and more convenient. In many cases, you can take your vehicle and drop it off and get a rental vehicle the same day. An estimate is then written immediately, parts are ordered and then work begins. Alternatively, if you choose your own shop, you must take your vehicle to a location and have the estimate done and then take the estimate to the shop of your choice and wait for parts to be ordered before getting in a rental. You must also coordinate submission of those estimates to the insurance company for their approval.
2. Another advantage of using an insurance company preferred shop, is that they will usually guarantee the work for the lifetime of vehicle, whereas personal shops do not may place more limited timelines on their warranty of work.
3. Many vehicle owners are under the misapprehension that by using the insurance companies’ shops, their vehicle won’t be fixed the right way. However, that assumption frequently untrue. Many insurance companies’ shops are held to a higher standard because they are guaranteeing their work for life.
4. That said, body work and repair work is, at times, an art. And like in any other industry, some repair shops are more skilled than others. If you have a unique vehicle that requires special knowledge or difficult to obtain parts, you may be better off choosing a specialty repair shop.
5. The bottom line is that we generally recommend owners use insurance company shops in most cases, however, owners can and should always consult with their agents if conflicted when making the decision on whether to use an insurance company body shop or a personal body shop.