Can an insurer dictate where I get my car repaired?

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Can an insurer dictate where I get my car repaired?

My neighbor hit my car when it wah parked in the street. His insurance company is telling me i have to go to a shop where they will pay them but do I have the legal right to do the work myself and have them send the check to me?

Asked on November 19, 2012 under Accident Law, Iowa

Answers:

MD, Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

The neighbor's insurance company has to protect itself and its insured. If you are a licensed mechanic with a certified mechanic repair shop, that should not be an issue. However, if this is simply an at home repair, you probably would only qualify for cost of product and not for labor and the insurance company will not want to take the chance you do a negligent repair.  A car insurance company cannot require you to go to a specific repair shop. You should file a complaint with your state insurance department regarding it.

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

An insurer can dictate where one gets his or her car repaired. However, if there is an estimate for the repair of the car at a shop that the carrier wants it to be taken, the owner of the damage party can simply accept the costs of the estimate as damages and take the car elsewhere to be repaired.


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