When your vehicle is sent to a DRP repair facility, the repairs are often done faster and cheaper than you might like.
You may be wondering, “How can fast and cheap be a bad thing?”
Simple: corners are cut, repairs aren’t thorough, and cheaper, more easily damaged parts are used! In the end, it’s your safety and security that is compromised.
The problem with DRP shops is that most people don’t know they have any other option. When their insurance company presents them with a list of body shops to send their vehicle to for repair, they don’t realize that they don’t have to choose any of the options provided by the insurance company.
According to the Fair Claims Settlement Practices Regulations Section 2695.8(e), your insurance company CANNOT require that your vehicle is repaired at a specific shop. What does this mean? Simple: your insurance company’s “recommended” options are nothing more than a suggestion. According to California Insurance laws, you have total control over which body repair facility your vehicle is sent to!
So, when you find yourself at the scene of an accident or collision, what should you do? How can you ensure that your vehicle is sent to the correct body shop–the one that you can be certain will do the job right using the correct parts?
Step 1: Contact the body shop of your choice. If you already know of a body shop you can trust (such as Network Auto Body), contact them immediately after calling your insurance. They will send a truck to you to tow away your vehicle, as well as assign a representative to help you deal with your insurance company.
Step 2: Inform the insurance company of where you want the repairs done. While the insurance company representative will try to “steer” your vehicle toward one of their DRP facilities, you are under no obligation to choose from their “recommended” facilities. Show them the Fair Claims Settlement Practices Regulations clause mentioned above, and they will have no choice but to acquiesce to your request for the vehicle to be repaired by the body shop of your choice.
Step 3: Present the insurance estimate to the body repair shop. If you went to your insurance company prior to contacting the repair facility of your choice. Your insurance company wrote at best an estimate for the visual damage only to the vehicle. Take the vehicle estimate to your body repair shop, and let them take a look at it. They will perform a thorough inspection of the vehicle, and they will deal with the insurance company to handle the claims negotiations.
Don’t let the insurance company tell you where to take your vehicle! You have the right to choose your body shop…