Accident scenes can be very shocking, especially right after the impact occurs. Try to remain calm and do the following:
Stop your vehicle. If you drive away, you could be charged with a “hit &run”
Contact the authorities. Try to assess the scene if anyone else is hurt. Otherwise, wait for the ambulance and/or police.
Wait for assistance before moving damaged vehicles.
Be courteous to all parties.
If you have any suspicions, inform the police.
Avoid making any statements about responsibilities to other drivers, witnesses, police or anyone else. Do not state you are at fault, even if you think you may have caused the accident.
Stay as calm as possible before making any statements or talking to the police.
Take photos before the scene is moved.
Contact you insurance company once you have had a chance to calm downand have gathered any pertinent information. They will likely interview you on the spot and request photos.
Call us for assistance with repair to your vehicle.
If a tow truck is needed, we can have them deliver your vehicle to our shop.
Why do insurance companies tell you where to take your vehicle?
Certain shops have contracts with insurance companies called DRP’s. These Direct Repair Programs (DRP) require the contracted body shops to follow the insurance companies guidelines which dictates what gets repaired, what parts to use, and how to do their paperwork, essentially making them an extension of the insurance company. These programs focus on saving the insurance companies money. Steering - is the term used for these tactics. Please inform us if any of this has been done to you.
Do I have to take my vehicle where the insurance company tells me to?
No, you have the right to choose the shop you want to use. The insurance companies use tactics such as; attempting to make it inconvenient for the insured to select other facilities. This tactic is used because it is illegal for an insurance company to tell you where the vehicle has to be repaired.
When an Insurance Company is paying the claim, you the vehicle owner, needs to decide which body shop you want to use and inform the insurance company. An insurance company cannot require you to have your vehicle repaired at a particular shop. Your Insurance Company may try to send you to a Direct Repair Shop but it is your right to choose a repair facility. The job of the insurance company is to explain and answer your questions and concerns of your policy and coverages. This will be in regards to OEM and non-OEM parts, depreciation of worn parts, rental car coverage, etc. They are paying for repairs to your car with your money! Therefore, it is your right to choose the shop you want to do the repairs.