Insurer and Garage Dispute Over Car Repair Estimate
If you think you are covered for all types of car repairs, think again. Your insurance company and repair shop could actually disagree on the repairs, and you end up not getting coverage for such disputed “necessary” repairs.
- They do not agree on the cost. If for instance you get an estimate and present it to your insurer, it may get rejected because your insurance company does not agree with the repair shop’s estimate. On the other hand, your insurance company could make their own estimate, which the garage rejects because it is too low.
- To fix or to replace. At times, the repair shop calls for total replacement of a damaged part, but your insurer may want repairs to be done before considering replacement. They can really disagree on this, especially since your insurance company does not entirely know the degree of damage.
- What replacement to use. Once replacement is approved by both parties, there could be a dispute over what type of replacement part to use. For the garage, an original replacement part is always the best choice, but for the insurance company, it is not cost-effective since original parts are more expensive.
- The labor cost. Insurance companies cap the labor cost at some level, which your repair shop may disagree contending that the repair requires complex skills and long hours to compete.
- Duration of repair. As some repair shops charge by the hour, your insurance firm may question the length of rendered service saying that such repair project could be done in shorter time, and that your repair shop may just be extending the duration of the repair to make more money.
Even if there are disagreements between your insurance company and repair shop, things get resolved quickly if they work together and collaborate. Also, it helps if you stick to one insurance company and one garage so that they can work out their relationship better in the future.