Please Note: The following questions and answers are not intended to provide legal advice; there may be misinterpretations or omissions in the information. Nonetheless, we hope you find this information helpful. Please contact us with any questions. We are happy to help you!
At the accident scene, should your vehicle not be safe to drive, advise the officer you would like to have your vehicle towed by Sheehan Cadillac Collision Center. Instruct the police that you would like your vehicle to be repaired at Sheehan Cadillac Collision Center or the repair shop of your choice. Only having your vehicle towed once will be a savings for your insurance company.
If your vehicle is safe to drive, take your vehicle to Sheehan Cadillac Collision Center, or the collision facility of your choice; give them all your insurance information, asking them to advise your insurance company about the repairs. You should also contact your insurance company and advise them on the damage, informing them of the facility you’ve selected.
Some insurance companies have what is called “drive-in claims service.” It is not mandatory you use this service unless your policy states otherwise. Just inform your insurance company where their claims person can see your vehicle.
If the accident is your fault, your insurance company will cover the damage to your vehicle and the other party. If the accident wasn’t your fault the other parties insurance should cover your damages; try to collect from the other insurance, this will entitle you to a rental vehicle and you won’t have to pay a deductible.
OEM stands for “Original Equipment Manufacturer” and is used to describe parts made by or for the manufacturer of your vehicle. So OEM Ford parts come from Ford, Mercedes parts from Mercedes, and so on.
Aftermarket (A/M) parts are used to describe parts that are produced by some manufacturers other than the one who originally made your car. Some aftermarket parts carry certification that helps ensure the basic quality of the part. Aftermarket parts are usually less expensive than new OEM, but for some applications may be a better choice than used OEM parts. While it is not the practice of Sheehan Cadillac Collision Center, some repairers and insurers list these parts as “Quality Replaced Parts.”
What are LKQ Parts?
LKQ stands for “like, kind and quality.” Most of us are more familiar with the other term of this category which is “used parts.” The term LKQ should more precisely define a sub-category of used parts that are just like the ones on your vehicle before the loss.
Do I have to accept used parts?
No, you do not have to accept used parts. Most customer oriented insurance companies will only suggest used parts (LKQ) when there is agreement from all parties; generally used parts are suggested when there needs to be a savings to justify the repairs. The insurance company’s obligation is to restore your vehicle to “pre-loss” condition – not better than it was and not worse.
Do I have to use the shop my insurance company recommends or can I always take it to Sheehan Cadillac Collision Center?
You can always take it to Sheehan Cadillac Collision Center. The insurance company cannot tell you where to repair your vehicle. Some insurance people with special interests will attempt to convince or STEER you to fix your vehicle at their PREFERRED SHOP, a shop that gives the insurance company special offers. These offers will often come at the vehicle owner’s expense which could compromise safety and the quality of repairs.
Should this happen please contact Sheehan Cadillac Collision Center; our professional claims handlers can guide you through this unfortunate practice. Remember that it is the insurance adjuster’s job to satisfy the customer and close the claim at the lowest possible cost. If you decide to use your insurance company’s preferred shop, ask if your policy contains an “elects to repair” clause, causing your insurance to be responsible for the quality of repairs and possibly loss of value.
Do I have to get multiple estimates?
No, you do not need to get multiple estimates. You only need to notify your insurance representative as to where you will be having your repairs done. Your insurance company will work hand in hand with your choice of shop to insure you receive the service and quality repairs you have come to expect.
What happens if the insurance company's estimate is lower than the one I get from Sheehan Cadillac Collision Center?
Insurance companies are generally willing to pay for a proper repair. The insurance company appraiser may include only the most obvious damage in their estimate. At Sheehan Cadillac Collision Center, we try to write as thorough an estimate as possible. Just bring the insurance estimate in with you and we can go over the differences. If necessary, we’ll notify the insurance company of the changes we need to make. Generally this just takes a phone call and we will bill your insurance company for the supplement at the completion of the repair.
What happens if more damage is found?
Today’s vehicles are very complex; so it can be difficult to see all the damage during the initial inspection. Therefore, finding additional damage has become very common. Estimates written without a thorough disassembly of the vehicle often have overlooked additional damages. Sheehan Cadillac Collision Center is the exception: our Blue Print process (Disassembly for Repair) almost always assures no surprise damage.
If additional damage is found, it is documented and discussed with you and the insurance company. The insurance company may, or may not, want to come see the damage. There supplemental charges are itemized, authorized and billed along with the rest of the repairs.
If the insurance representative wants to come see the additional damage, the repair process could be delayed from 2-5 business days. Be mindful that any additional parts found to be damaged will have to be ordered and that can lead to another delay (based on availability).
What is a deductible?
A deductible is like a “co-pay” in health insurance. It is a portion of the repair bill that is not covered by your insurance policy. The amount is determined by your insurance policy and is first set when you first purchased your insurance.
Deductibles are commonly $100, $250, $500 and $1000. Typically the higher your deductible amount, the lower your insurance premium.
When and where do I pay my deductible?
Your deductible is paid directly to Sheehan Cadillac Collision Center when your repairs are complete. The insurance company pays us for the work performed minus your deductible.
Can you save me my deductible?
No. And neither can any other honest repair facility. Your insurance policy is a contract between you and your insurance carrier. It specifically outlines what is covered by insurance and what is going to be your financial responsibility. Falsely manipulating an insurance claim to advance one party’s interest is unethical and in many cases it is illegal. There may be legitimate ways to reduce your cost, such as appearance allowances or “cashing out” and declining some portion of the repair. We suggest that you consult your insurance company for details. Be wary of a repair shop that offers to “cover your deductible.”
What is the difference between collision insurance and comprehensive insurance coverage?
Collision insurance and comprehensive insurance may vary. Generally, collision insurance covers damage to your vehicle caused by a collision with another object. Comprehensive insurance covers damage to your automobile from incidents such as vandalism, theft or glass breakage. It is generally a good idea to periodically review your policy and ask your insurance agent what exclusions are in your policy.
Will my insurance rates go up?
Your rates may or may not go up depending on who is at fault, and the type of loss; also your driving history may influence a rate increase. Your insurance agent or customer service representative can assist you in determining the impact of a given claim on your own policy premium.
Is it hard to match the color of my paint?
Most all colors can be matched by creating an illusion. Sheehan Cadillac Collision Center employs highly skilled paint professionals who are factory trained using state of the art equipment to assure colors are matched to manufacturer’s standards.
Sheehan Cadillac Collision Center uses the following steps to ensure your satisfaction with the color match.
Your vehicle has an information label that includes a paint code. This code identifies the color of your car.
Our computerized paint-mixing system includes the standard color for your car and known variants. The database of known variants is important because in the vehicle manufacturer process there is some variability (such variations typically occur between paint lots or between factories). We check for the best match among these base colors and their variants.
A perfect match usually cannot be obtained by tinting alone.
Blending is used to fade the freshly painted finish into the original. Between tinting and blending, the color match area becomes completely invisible.
What about my personal belongings?
Before dropping off your vehicle, we recommend you remove your personal belongings or anything of value. Our insurance covers damage to your vehicle as a result of fire, theft, or even employee error, but it only covers the vehicle and its factory installed parts. Consequently, we do not assume liability for other items that you choose to leave in your vehicle. Even though our team is comprised of very honest people, they often remove interior parts to gain access to the damaged area or to protect the interior from damage. One misplaced item can cause a lot of hard feelings and we value your good opinion.
Does Sheehan Cadillac Collision Center fix my kind of car?
Sheehan Cadillac Collision Center’s skilled technicians are trained to repair all makes and models of vehicles, foreign and domestic. We also have technicians who specialize in certain makes of vehicles, having factory certified technicians for European vehicle and also specially trained technicians for Asian vehicles.
Does Sheehan Cadillac Collision Center guarantee their work?
Sheehan Cadillac Collision Center warrants every repair we do. We offer fast, friendly, quality repairs that are guaranteed!
Will Sheehan Cadillac Collision Center repair my car as good as new?
At Sheehan Cadillac Collision Center we believe in the “invisible” repair. We repair our vehicles to meet or exceed all manufacturer repair standards. This allows us to offer our lifetime warranty.
What will it cost me?
If you are filing an insurance claim with your insurance company all you will be responsible for is the price of your deductible. If you will be paying off your repairs yourself, an estimate will be provided to you after we have the opportunity to assess the damage of your vehicle and explain the repair process to you.
Will Sheehan Cadillac Collision Center coordinate a rental car for me?
Yes. We can coordinate a rental agency to pick you up at the Sheehan Cadillac Collision Center when you drop off your vehicle for repairs.