You can always take it to International Auto Body and Paint. The insurance company cannot tell you where to repair your vehicle. Insurance carriers have contracts called DRP (direct repair programs) with certain auto body shops that are obligated to give discounts in parts and labor in exchange to get your vehicle for repairs. This is why there is so much pressure placed on you to go to their “preferred shop.” These shops prioritize the insurance companies first, and put you second. Our philosophy is our customer comes first.
They will use tactics such as:
“They are not on our list, so we will not guarantee the repairs.” – The insurance company does not need to guarantee repairs. Since you are our customer, and it is your vehicle that is being repaired by us, all our work is guaranteed.
“They charge more than the prevailing rate and you will have to pay the difference.” – We are here for you, and it’s our job that the paying insurance pays for all incurred losses, not you. We make sure you will not be responsible for any other expense. (deductible may apply)
“If you use them, we can’t get our adjuster out there for several days. If you take it to s shop on our list , we will have someone start on it right away.” – This is not true. Most companies are required to evaluate and estimate a vehicle within 72 hours.
“Claims take longer if you use them.” – We do not take longer. Insurance companies take longer to respond but this is not always the case if we have all the claim information, we are on top of it and making our phone calls to make sure the insurance company is aware of your vehicle and document as we make progress with repairs.
These are some of the tactics used to steer you to their DRP shops. A shop that gives the insurance company special deals will often come at the vehicle owner’s expense which could compromise safety and the quality of repairs. Should this happen please contact International Auto Body and Paint. Our professional claims handlers can guide you through this unfortunate practice. We always keep the best interests of our customer in mind, which is you, not your insurance company. If you decide to use your insurance company’s preferred shop, ask if your policy contains an “elects to repair” clause, causing your insurance to be responsible for the quality of repairs and possibly loss of value.
No, you should determine who is paying for the damages first, because your vehicle may require some disassembly of damaged parts to produce an accurate estimate and California state law allows the consumer to choose any shop to repair their vehicle. Only you need to notify the insurance company to where you will be having your repairs done. Your insurance company is obligated to work with the shop of your choice.
Bring insurance information that may be yours or the other party and the name of the contact person(s). We can handle your insurance claims process for you. The best thing to do if possible is to leave the vehicle if it is not safe to drive. If it’s safe to drive, schedule an appointment for drop off. This way we can inspect it with the insurance company to prevent any discrepencies that could delay repairs.
This depends on the amount of damage; however we do have a quick turnaround time and always communicate what stages the repairs are in. There are external factors that can slow down the process of repairs, such as insurance acceptance of liability, inspections. Parts can also be a factor if they are back ordered or coming from other countries.
Yes, if you have comprehensive coverage in your policy. No matter how small or large, a scratch involves the same process of repairs. Any panel that is scratched needs to be refinished in its entirety.
If you have gone with your insurance carrier for some reason, this is what you have agreed to pay when you purchased your policy; however, your insurance company may waive your deductible (liability accepted) or will collect from the other party’s insurance or individual to get your reimbursed.
If you go through your insurance and have coverage for rental, you may use it if your vehicle is unsafe to drive or will cause more damage when driving. If your vehicle is safe to drive, you will need to get an inspection done and have an appointment to drop off the vehicle at our facilty. This way we can take immediate action on your vehicle repairs. If the other party’s insurance has accepted liability, then they will pay for the rental vehicle and any other related losses that may incur. Ask your insurance company for more details, or simply ask us.
Total loss means the repair cost of your vehicle exceeds the value in its current condition and cannot be repaired sufficiently to a pre accident condition. Then there is salvage value which is the value in its current state; this also may be a factor as the insurance company may reduce its expenses if the salvage value is high.
The insurance company will generate a current evaluation of your vehicle in the geographical area based on the age, mileage, condition, and options your vehicle may have. They will contact you regarding the vehicle replacement costs as well, such as tax and license fees. Then they will pay for any other losses respectively and pick up your vehicle once it’s released by you and take it to a salvage yard to be auctioned off.