Insurance Company Recommends A Collision Center: Can You Decline?

If you are approved to get work done your your vehicle after a collision, then your insurance company may have recommended a collision center for your repairs. You may worry that choosing another provider will jeopardize your claims. Here's what you need to know about declining the recommended collision center and choosing your own. 

Why Does the Insurance Center Choose a Shop?

It's in your insurer's best interest for you to work with the shops they choose. Often, these shops have agreed to provide service to that insurer at a discounted rate since they bring in repeat business. Your insurer may also have confidence that they will document the repairs correctly, making it easier to process your claim. However, this doesn't mean that choosing their repair shops is your only choice.

What Happens if I Use Another Shop?

Before you use another shop, be sure to call your insurance agent to let them know. This way, they can be on the lookout for paperwork regarding your claim. Some insurance representatives may try to talk you out of choosing another provider, but if you stand your ground there is nothing they can do. It may be true that your claim will be delayed a few days to a week, since they are working with a new provider, but this may be worth it in order to get better service. 

Choosing Your Own: What to Look For

With that being said, the insurance company does trust their own providers to give good service. If you're going to buck the system and look for your own collision center, make sure that you are getting a quality service. Reasonable labor charges, a knowledgeable and friendly staff, and great reputation are reasons to consider switching repair centers. 

Another reason to choose your own shop is based on the type of repairs they will make. For instance, with cosmetic dents, some collision repair shops will opt to use paint-less dent repair while others are willing to give you a full replacement or paint touch up along with your repair. Since your insurance payout can be influenced by what your collision mechanic recommends, you might want to choose someone who will do the most thorough job rather than the bare minimum. 

There are many skilled collision center choices, so don't be afraid to speak up to your insurance company to get the service you want. By communicating effectively with your insurance representative, you can avoid delays on your claim even when you decline their preferred repair shop.