Drivers Should Choose Their Accident Repair Bodyshop

Fortunately for most drivers, the biggest headache facing them after a road accident is not a trip to the local A&E but the issue of getting their vehicle returned to its pre-accident condition and back on the road. A survey carried out on behalf of Vauxhall has found that when it comes to getting your damaged vehicle repaired, most motorists do not know that it is their right to choose where their vehicle is repaired and assume that they have to automatically go with their insurers' choice of repairer.

Of 1,000 people surveyed, only 47 per cent of 18-24 year-olds, and worse still, 39 per cent of 25 to 34 year-olds were aware that it isn't just a case of following your vehicle to where the insurance company wishes to take it. Instead you can choose a local garage or manufacturers' site without invalidating your insurance policy, unless the policy holder has signed away their rights within the small print of their policy documentation.

It was only older and more experienced motorists aged 55+ who seemed to have read the small print of their insurance policies with the majority, 65 per cent, saying they knew they had a choice when making a claim.

Interestingly, when asked where they would ideally like to take their vehicle to get repaired, far more people said they would rather go to the original manufacturer than go with their insurers' choice of repairer. In fact, only 21 per cent of people asked said they would choose to go where the insurance company sent them, saying that specialist knowledge of their vehicle brand and the ability to source and fit original parts were the main reasons why they would rather use an original manufacturer.

However it remains a concern for many of the motorists surveyed that failure to use the insurance company's approved repairer may in some way delay their claim or incur further costs for which they could be liable.

Bernard Berman, Accident Repair Channel Manager GM UK & Ireland, who commissioned the research, said: "By undertaking this survey we hope to better inform our customers and other motorists as to the options they have available by law. Having an accident is extremely stressful without worrying about the quality of work you may receive from a bodyshop that is not approved by the manufacturer, or whether you receive recycled or used parts which may invalidate your existing manufacturers' warranty."

13 July 2009 Staff

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