Can I Choose My Own Repair Shop Following a Florida Car Accident?

Car accidents are a frequent occurrence in Pompano Beach, Florida. In 2019 alone, there were about 2,950 fatal crashes in Florida. These fatal collisions recorded 3,183 deaths. Then, in 2020, Broward County recorded 268 fatalities and 18,984 accident injuries. When these collisions occur, survivors are often more concerned with treating their injuries. 

Indeed, a Pompano Beach car accident lawyer will recommend such medical care. However, the crash survivor’s car may have sustained scratches, dents, or worse. The vehicular damage may be even more extensive. Therefore, they will want to repair the damaged vehicle.

At this stage, the issue of where to fix their car now arises. Car accident victims must now ask themselves whether they have the right to choose which repair shop to go to. Since they may not have this answer, a car accident attorney is the best person to turn to. 

Can I Select My Own Vehicle Repair Shop After a Florida Car Accident?

Yes, car accident victims can choose their car repair shop after an accident. There’s no law in Florida prohibiting this choice. This is the general principle if you’re recovering the repair costs from the at-fault party’s insurer. However, you can also file a claim with your insurance company. If you do, then you’ll have to abide by the terms of your insurance policy. 

Therefore, it’s noteworthy that your policy may empower your insurer to choose your repair shop so you can only repair your vehicle at an authorized establishment. This means that you must read your insurance policy carefully. This way, you’ll not unknowingly breach the contract’s terms by using an unauthorized repairer. 

In addition, you can choose whether you’re comfortable with this contractual term. However, you can choose your repair shop without such provision. You have this right even if your insurer recommends one repairer.

Car Accident Evaluation and Assessment

Most insurers will investigate a car accident before paying any compensation. Usually, this investigation occurs before the vehicle repair. This will be the case whether or not you’re using their repair shop. Furthermore, the rationale for such evaluation is clear: the company wants to assure that the accident is genuine. 

Additionally, the insurer conducts the inspection to assess the extent of the damage. Throughout this process, they’ll also determine the car’s repair costs. This inspection often involves the insurer sending a professional. They can come to your home or wherever the car is parked. Furthermore, it isn’t unusual to see the inspector taking photos of the car.

Can I Conduct a Personal Evaluation?

Yes, nothing stops you from hiring a vehicle damage analyst. It’ll actually be best if you do so. This is because insurance companies always want to reduce their costs. That said, their estimates may be inaccurate. If they can reduce your repair estimates, they can increase their profits after paying compensation. 

Hiring your own expert is in your own best interest. Such a professional will have no incentive to reduce the actual repair costs. This way, you wouldn’t run into difficulties handling the insufficient sum the insurer pays you. 

Should I Use My Insurance Company’s Repair Shop?

Suppose you survive a Pompano Beach car accident. Then, you may have to answer this question at some point. Let’s imagine that your insurance policy says you must use their repair shop. Then, you have no other choice. However, if it’s not mandatory, you have a tough decision to make before you.

It’s best to have all the necessary information. Such reliable data will help you make an excellent decision. Below, we analyze the advantages of using your insurer’s repair shop versus another. 

Ease of Getting Compensation

Insurance companies only recommend repair shops affiliated with them. This professional relationship thus makes it easier to recover the repair costs. First, the insurer trusts the repair shop, so they’re unlikely to challenge their repair estimates. In addition, they’ll readily cover the cost of all damage the repairer links to the crash. 

All these save you the stress of proving the validity of your own repair shop’s figures. Suppose you have a great relationship with your insurer, and your vehicle didn’t sustain significant damage. In this case, following your insurer’s preference isn’t a bad idea.

Resolving Repair Mistakes

Repair shops often make mistakes when fixing accident vehicles. Their carelessness can worsen the car’s condition. It may then require additional costs to fully restore your vehicle. If your repair shop makes this mistake, escaping the financial consequence will be challenging.

However, the case will be different if the fault’s from your insurer’s repairer. Here, they’ll have to work out a solution amongst themselves. You then won’t have to bear any financial consequences. You also get your vehicle in perfect condition.

Fixing Additional Damage

Sometimes, car repair shops discover additional damage during the repair process. This damage could have been missed during the initial assessment. However, it’s still linked to the accident. When this happens, the insurer will have to cover these additional damages. 

Usually, they’ll have to draft a supplemental damage estimate. However, imagine that your repair shop discovered the additional damages. The insurance company may deny its link to the original accident. For example, they could claim that it was a pre-existing condition.

Cost of Repairs

Car repair shops are in business to make a profit. This means that they often charge exorbitant repair fees. Furthermore, you can receive a bill that is higher than your insurance coverage. If this happens, recovering this sum from your insurer will be difficult. You may have to seek some legal alternatives.

However, your insurance company’s relationship with its repairer comes in handy. Firstly, they most likely get several customers from your insurer. This means that they’ll only charge reasonable fees to maintain this relationship. Therefore, you may not have to pay any extra fees.

Can I Trust My Insurance Company’s Body Shop?

Yes, you can trust that the insurer’s repair shop will fix your vehicle properly. It’s in your insurer’s best interest to fix your car properly. Firstly, a badly maintained vehicle is more susceptible to damage following an accident – hasty repairs can lead to worse problems in the future.

Furthermore, your insurer will have to pay for these future repairs, so they’ll want to make sure that your car is properly fixed to avoid this. Additionally, handling your car badly can be a sign of insurance bad faith. For example, if you discover that your insurer intentionally refused to properly fix your vehicle, you may have a legal claim against them. A smart insurer will try to avoid this at all costs. 

Pompano Beach, FL, Car Accident Lawyers Can Help You Seek Compensation

Repairing your car following a Florida car accident can be costly. This is the case whether you choose your car repair shop or not. Therefore, it’ll be best to explore the option of getting damages from the at-fault party. 

First, however, you’ll need the best car accident lawyers. Our attorneys at Frankl Kominsky Injury Lawyers can help you seek the maximum compensation for your car accident losses. This would include your vehicle repair, medical bills, and other related bills. Call us today at (561) 800-8000 for a FREE consultation on your Florida car accident claim. 

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