If I received my car back from body shop but it was not completely repaired, can the insurance company make me go back to the same shop for final repairs?

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If I received my car back from body shop but it was not completely repaired, can the insurance company make me go back to the same shop for final repairs?

The insurance company that paid for repairs says that I have to take back to the body shop that didn’t really fix car in the first place. Can I request that a different body shop in the insurance company’s network make the final repairs?

Asked on August 20, 2019 under Accident Law, Georgia

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 1 year ago | Contributor

Actually, the insurance company is within its legal rights to require you to do this. It can elect that the original body shop can be given the opportunity to correct and complete its repair. The fact is that by having you go back to the same shop and making it fix things at its own expense, the insurance company will not have to pay a different shop to finish the repairs, so sending you back will save it money.

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 1 year ago | Contributor

Yes, they can require this. The shop that didn't do the complete repairs gets the opportunity to "mitigate their damages" (what they could be liable for due to their failure) by finishing up the repairs, and the insurer is allowed to mitigate or reduce its own costs by having you go back to the same place which will almost always be cheaper or less expensive than going to a new place and starting over. You cannot require other parties to take the less economically effecient course and pay more to correct or fix the situation than is necessary.


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