STEERING PRACTICES BY INSURANCE COMPANIES
We have compiled a list of steering tactics that most insurance companies use to get you, the consumer to have your vehicle repaired by one of the insurance company’s “Preferred Network Repair Shop.” These shops are commonly known as DRP’s: Direct Repair Program. The problem with these DRP’s is that you, the owner of your automobile, are taken completely out of the equation of how your vehicle is repaired. At Billy Ray’s Collision Center we do not have any contracts with any insurance companies which in turn allows us to repair your vehicle back to pre-accident condition the proper way. Our contract is with you, the customer! We work with all insurance claims but we do not have to conform to impractical business practices and “cut corners “to offer the insurance companies discounts which in turn can lead to poor, unsafe repairs to your car. Below are some of the things you will hear from your insurance company when you file a claim.
1. “We have a shop near you that is on our list and their work is backed by a Lifetime Warranty by us.”
FALSE: Any and every shop is going to offer you a Lifetime Warranty. If you have a problem with your vehicle after the repairs are completed, you are not going to take your car back to the insurance company. You will take it back to the shop. The insurance company’s warranty means nothing. In fact, it is a very common practice for a consumer to take their vehicle to another shop to have it repaired properly after it has been improperly repaired by a “DRP.” Guess who pays for the corrective repairs? Answer: the repair shop that did the initial repairs, not the insurance company.
2. “If you take your car to a shop that is not on our “list”, you may have to pay out of pocket for additional expenses.”
FALSE: The insurance company is responsible for ALL repairs that are deemed accident related. The only thing you will ever have to pay to the shop is your deductible, if one applies, and the amount of the initial check that the insurance company wrote for the initial repair estimate.
3. “If your car has been towed to a shop not on a “DRP” list, you will be responsible for any storage charges accrued while at the shop.”
FALSE: The insurance company is responsible for paying for “reasonable towing and storage charges” if you choose a repair facility not on their “preferred” list. Most repair shops do not charge any storage fees if the vehicle is repaired at that shop.
Insurance companies use very specific tactics to persuade you to use THEIR shop.
We believe that people deserve to understand their rights, and know what options they have, so we’ve put together this list of 5 misleading things you might hear from your insurance company after a car accident:
1. They are not one of our preferred shops so we can’t guarantee the repairs.
FALSE - Billy Ray’s offers a lifetime unconditional warranty on EVERYTHING WE DO!
2. If you don’t use our shop you will have to pay the difference.
FALSE - 99.9% of the time the original insurance estimate is inadequate. Insurers will pay more when we show what is necessary to properly and safely repair your vehicle.
3. If you use that shop, we can’t get someone out for several days but if you use our preferred shop we have some there to start on it right away.
FALSE - It usually takes no longer than 3 days for most insurance companies to get someone out to inspect the damaged vehicle. This is just another attempt to get these customers into the preferred shop. If it takes longer, it is usually delays caused by the insurance company. But it is well worth the wait to get a complete quality repair.
4. Our preferred shop will wash and vacuum your vehicle.
TRUE - Billy Ray’s Collision Center not only washes and vacuums your car, we also clean the windows for you!!
5. The only reason the repairs might take longer is usually as a result of a poorly written estimate on the insurers’ part and the insurance companies response time. They are typically slow to respond and they do not pay us as quickly as they pay their preferred providers. After a car accident, bring your vehicle to Billy Ray’s Collision Center where you, the customer, are our top priority.
The vehicle owner is the customer, so we must serve their interests at all times. A company can’t serve two masters. When you come to Billy Ray’s Collision Center, you will see that YOU are our top priority. We will work for you to properly, and safely, repair your vehicle with the highest level of quality and service.