Car accidents are becoming increasingly common, especially in the age of cell phone use. While drivers used to worry about environmental hazards and falling asleep at the wheel, more car accidents are caused by distracted driving—namely through the use of cell phones. In fact, more than 400,000 people were injured as a result of distracted driving in 2018 and another 3,000 were killed in these car accidents. It’s common for serious injury and even property damage to occur following a motor vehicle collision.
After you ensure your safety and health following a crash, the next most important step is to repair your car. After all, it’s rare for an automobile to live through a car accident unscathed. Just like you have to pay your medical bills, you also have to tend to the health of your car. Even if you have a great auto accident attorney, that doesn’t make the headache of repairing your car any easier (even if you are able to file an insurance claim against the other guy.
Here are some of the best tips for getting your car repaired and back on the road.
1. Your auto shop is your choice.
In some cases, your insurance company might try to tell you which auto accident shops you can visit. This is because the insurance company has a deal with certain motor vehicle shops, making it easier for car accident victims to get prompt repairs. Rest assured that these are reputable companies that are used to working with your insurance company. However, you aren’t legally bound to visit those shops following your motor vehicle accident.
If you have a preferred automotive technician, you can likely go to their shop instead. You might need to obtain bids from three local shops to ensure that you’re getting a price that works for your insurance company, but in most cases, your legal rights allow you to seek out other options. Just make sure that they are ASE certified to get the job done right.
2. You don’t have to get your car fixed.
If you receive a kickback from your insurance as a result of the accident, you aren’t legally obligated to get your car fixed. This is great if the amount of damages isn’t going to make or break your car. For simple cosmetic issues, most car accident victims are simply able to take this money to the bank. Regardless, your insurance company and the at-fault party is responsible for giving you money for the cost of repair, whether you choose to use it for your car or not.
As such, you might want to take that money from your insurance policy down to auction malls or other car companies offering great promotions. Florida car auctions sell used cars, salvaged options, and, sometimes, usable parts. You can invest in an entirely new car or try to find cheaper parts to repair the number of damages on your current vehicle. You never know what gems you can find at the right auto auction.
If you no longer wish to keep your car, you can usually ask your insurance company to pay you for the value of the car. You might also be able to salvage some parts from your current car or sell it as a used car through public auctions, as well. There are plenty of opportunities available if you no longer wish to keep your current ride.
3. Shop for lower insurance rates.
Whether you choose to keep your car or not is up to you. You have a say in that matter. What you might not have a say in is rising insurance costs with your current insurance policy.
Depending on the severity of the accident and who was at fault, you can expect your insurance rates to go up by around 50%. Even if you weren’t the at-fault driver, some insurance companies will still raise your premiums by 10 percent or more. Some understanding insurance companies offer accident forgiveness programs but not everyone has that option. Talk to your car accident lawyer to get advice on finding a new insurance company before you start paying more. After all, car accident attorneys are here for you, regardless of the number of damages your vehicle might have incurred. Rely on these tips to get your life back on track after a car accident.
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