Did you know that some insurance companies have ownership in some shops? It makes you wonder who the real customer is. We at Bighley Auto Body believe we have a responsibility to you who is ultimately our customer not the insurance company.
The reason some insurance companies use carefully crafted word tracks is that the state does not allow insurance companies to "steer" “direct", or "refer" customers to a particular shop so they have come up with the following word tracks to intimidate you into thinking you have to do what the insurance company says, or they will not pay for the claim. Some insurance companies also have bonus programs for employees that steer claims to the networked shops, so do not think that they have your best interest in mind. Some of these claims people have never see a particular shop, nor have any knowledge of any of their staff. They are just directing claims to whomever their company has a "deal" with so that they hit a bonus quota and do the repair for a lower cost, in which sometimes corners are cut to do the work for this cost. Meaning you may end up with a sub-standard repair.
Whether you choose to use us or another repair shop, do not let the insurance company manipulate you with their word tracks.
These are often heard phrases from Insurance Companies when you want to bring your vehicle to Bighley Auto Body or any shop that is not on their "List" or in their “Network”, and what our response is.
- "They are not one of our network shops and they are not on our list, so we can not guarantee the repairs"
We identify you as our primary customer, not the insurance company. As for our guarantee, they do not need to, as we have our own lifetime guarantee.
- "If you use them, we can't get our adjuster out for several days, if you take it to our network shop we will have someone start on it right away".
This is just another way to steer you. Most companies are required to appraise a vehicle within 72 hrs.
- "If you use a shop out of our network, you will have to pay for your rental out of pocket"
This is also false, but some insurance companies will try to force you into a rental reimbursement, which means they will either try to get you to pay with your credit card and then reimburse you, or offer to send check for rental days. Most companies do have direct bill agreements with rental companies, but they do not always disclose that. Always remember as a claimant against a company, or insured with your own company, that you also have rights to bring your vehicle to your shop of choice.
- "That shop charges more than the prevailing rate and you will have to pay the difference in repair cost"
The laws states that the insurance company will pay the cost of repairs and case law has already determined that labor rate differences of $2-$4 an hour in a given market area is reasonable and competitive. Sometimes when there are discrepancies in the repair cost because a carrier is trying to force us to do something that is not in your best interest. We can assist you with the Customer Questionnaire on Claims Process form so the AASP of MN (Alliance of Automotive Service Providers) can monitor which insurance companies are respecting your choice and rights, and which companies that are not.
- "Claims will take longer to settle if you use them"
We look after everything for you, including your rental car arrangements and dealing with the appraiser. The only thing that takes longer is they can sometimes be slow to respond and they may not pay us as quickly as they pay their preferred providers.
These are just a few of the word tracks used by insurance companies to manipulate you into using a specific repair facility in their network. Be careful, it is your vehicle, your investment and you have the right to make the choice on who repairs your vehicle.
Our staff would be more than happy to assist you in the claims process. The truth is that we work with every insurance company out there.
More importantly we do not lose sight of who the customer is, you. We understand the investment that you have in your vehicle and we want to make sure that the value of your investment is not diminished through poor quality repairs. Most insurance companies will play a game by saying that you will not keep your vehicle very long, so they are not to worried about using sub-standard parts.
The bad news about this is that while the insurance company may save $50 on a part, you, the unsuspecting customer could be loosing hundreds or even thousands of dollars when it comes time for you to sell or trade your vehicle. If an insurance company chooses to use these types of parts, we will be more than happy to inform you of such, and get your vehicle the correct parts to bring it back to pre-accident condition.