So you were involved in an accident and are not sure what to do. We are more than happy to assist you in the whole process from start to finish.
- What should I do if I am involved in an accident?
No matter how minor, it is wise to report every accident to the police. Then, contact us to make arrangements for pickup and repairs. We can assist you with the processing of your claim, answer your questions, and advise you to ensure safe and proper repairs are made to your vehicle.
- What do I do when my vehicle is not drivable?
If your vehicle needs to be towed the police will call a towing company. Then call us so that we may make arrangements to bring your vehicle to our facility. Give the towing company our information and ask to have your vehicle towed to our location. If we are closed at the time, have your vehicle towed directly to your home, pay all charges, then contact us the next morning. WARNING: DO NOT SIGN ANY FORMS UNLESS YOU ASK WHAT THEY MEAN. Of course you can always contact us to pick up your vehicle directly from the breakdown or scene of accident. Local laws permitting. We provide 24 hour towing.
- Do I have to take my vehicle to a drive-in claims center or get multiple appraisals?
No. If you request it, your insurance company must inspect the damage to your vehicle at our facility rather than at their drive-in claims center. In fact, when you think about it, you don’t really need an estimate at all. You just need your car repaired and You have the right to have your car repaired at the repair shop of your choice. Insurance companies are legally prohibited from coercing or using any tactics intended to prevent you from seeking damage appraisals from your own body shop rather than their drive-in facility. Know your rights! Be aware that insurance companies will sometimes try to "steer" you towards one of their preffered or direct repair shops. When they do this they are breaking the laws and infringing on your rights as a consumer in New York State. For more information visit our blog post regarding STEERING by insurance companies, and how it can impact your vehicle, safety and how it violates your rights. Stay informed, be aware.
- Can I have my car inspected and repaired at Chase Collision?
Yes you can! You do not have to have your vehicle inspected where the insurance company tells you to. You decide where to get it inspected and where to get it repaired. Keep in mind you pay the monthly premium to the insurance company so they work for you. They can NOT tell you where to have your vehicle inspected nor can they tell you where to get it repaired. Know your rights, there are laws in place to protect you specifically so you will not be taken advantage of by your insurer.
- Do I have to use a specific collision repair facility?
No. In New York, you have the absolute right to select the collision repair shop of your choice. When your insurer gives you a list of registered repair shops, they likely will have indicated those shops which have entered into a contract with them. The contract determines how your vehicle will be repaired and encourages the use of imitation replacement parts. By choosing an insurance -preferred or –referral shop, you may be giving up your rights in the repair process.
DO NOT select a repair shop because they provided you with the lowest estimate. Preliminary estimates only detail the visual damage to your vehicle. There is almost certainly going to be more damage discovered after the vehicle is disassembled and inspected thoroughly. Evaluate the people you have come in contact with. Were they courteous? Did they explain the insurance claim process to you? Were they knowledgeable and did they take a real interest in your vehicle?
- Who guarantees the workmanship for the repairs?
The repair facility is responsible for the workmanship. Insurance companies do not repair automobiles. If there is a concern, even with a facility selected by the insurance company, the facility itself is responsible. Every collision repair shop registered as a Motor Vehicle Repair Shop is required to be bonded and is responsible for safe and proper repairs. If your insurance company claims they “will not guarantee the repairs,” don’t worry. The repair facility must guarantee them, as required by law. We are happy to offer our customers a lifetime warranty on our repair work and paint jobs. Contact us for a more detailed description of the warranty available.
- Why should I choose Chase Collision rather than one “suggested” by the insurance company?
There are compelling reasons to choose an independent, trusted repair shop that you know will make sure the vehicle is truly restored to its pre-accident condition. Insurance appraisers work for the insurance company. Chase collision works for you, we are looking out for your best interest. We will negotiate directly with the insurance company for the proper repairs so that your vehicle is safe for you and your family. Chase looks out for your interests and will serve as your advocate in the repair process. Preferred / referral or DRP shops represent the insurance company in both negotiations and the repair of the vehicle. They contract with insurance companies regarding the repairs, costs and repair procedures. The insurance company sets the rules and the repair shop simply follows them to keep the insurance companies’ costs down. These cost reductions have to come from somewhere. They may affect the quality and thoroughness of the repair service and/or the quality and condition of the parts used. You have paid your insurance premiums with the expectation of receiving safe and proper repairs – not cheap unsafe repairs. Remeber our slogan;
"We are your friend in the business"
What are imitation or non-OEM parts?
Imitation parts (a.k.a. generic, aftermarket, quality replacement or non-original equipment manufacturer) are “knock-off” parts made by a company other than the manufacturer of your vehicle. These parts are made to look like your vehicle’s parts, but may never have been crash tested and not covered under your vehicle manufacturer’s warranty. In addition to these concerns, there are no provisions for recalls based on the safety or performance of these parts. Your insurance company may attempt to use imitation parts to save money on your vehicle’s repairs. Here at Chase, we will help you negotiate with your insurance company for the appropriate original equipment manufacturer’s parts to maintain the integrity and value of your vehicle.
- How Much Will This Cost Me?
Generally our customer is responsible for paying only their insurance deductible plus any “betterment” or “depreciation” as assessed by the insurance company. Often times, our customers ask to have non-accident related dings or scrapes repaired while the vehicle is already in the shop. It is a good time to restore the value and beauty back into your vehicle by fixing the dents, dings or scratches your vehicle gets in the parking lot or from driving down the road of life. We call this “extra work” and our appraisers can provide you with a written estimate to repair these blemishes too.
What should I do with the check from my insurance company?
We recommend that you endorse the insurance check over to CHASE COLLISION, If you deposit the check, your bank will require the check to clear before you are able to draw funds against it, causing a delay in the delivery of your completed vehicle. Please note shop policy policy requires payment in full at the time of the delivery.
Why Is The Final Bill So Much Higher Than The Insurance Company’s Original Estimate?
The original insurance appraisal is written to identify only the visual damage done to your vehicle. The insurance appraiser did not disassemble your vehicle and methodically inspect each part for damage. Because they do not go through this process, they are unable to assess all of the damage. As collision repair professionals, Chase Collision Center licensed appraisers will take the time to identify all of the related damage done to your vehicle and obtain the necessary authorization from your insurance company to make these repairs. You should demand that 100% of the damage is repaired. The result of our diligence is that your vehicle gets returned to its pre-accident operation, safety and value.
If you still have further questions, inquirys or concerns feel free to contact us via email, or give us a call to discuss any issues you may have about the repair process or dealings with insurance companies.