Welcome to our video series, Car Accident Property Damage: How-to Guide. Devised by Andrew Kryder, Chicago car accident attorney and founding partner of The Kryder Law Group, LLC Accident and Injury Lawyers. This series is intended to guide individuals through the process of managing their auto insurance claims independently to get their car fixed when no one was injured when the accident occurred.
Gain valuable insights, learn step-by-step procedures, and get answers to your questions on how to navigate the aftermath of an auto accident—from filing a car insurance claim to getting your vehicle repaired in a repair shop to ensuring your property damage issues are resolved with the car insurance company.
Andy begins by summarizing the steps so far: “Now you’ve set up the claim, you’ve documented the damage, you’ve got an estimate, and the mechanic is about ready to start the repairs to your car.”
Working with Auto Repair Shops
“A lot of people want to know,” he continues, ” ‘Can I take this to my own mechanic instead of the [mechanic from the insurance provider] . . . I’ve known [him] for years, and I trust that he’s going to do the work right.’ “
Andy answers, “You can, but if your mechanic isn’t going to do it for the same price as the insurance company mechanic, you’re going to be responsible for the difference.”
Using a Mechanic from Your Own Insurance Company
“Let’s say the insurance company has given you [a $2,000 estimate] to repair your car, but you want to take it to your own mechanic. He’s going to charge $3,000. The insurance company isn’t going to pay $3,000.” They’ve already identified a certain auto body shop that will do it for $2,000.
“So in this particular example,” he concludes, “they’ll give you the $2,000 because that restores your property, and if you wanted to take it to your own mechanic you’d have to pay the extra 1,000 in order to get it fixed.”