You’ve recently had an auto accident that wasn’t your fault, and now not only have you got to face possible injury or ongoing medical bills, but you’ve also got some rather unexpected repair bills. Many of us have been there before- the minor bash or inconvenience of a car accident that has damaged your vehicle but saved you from injury. Fixing a car after an accident is a major step towards getting “back to normal”, but it’s a big expense. And now you want to save some more money by repairing it yourself, right?
But, after fixing a car, can you still secure a payout from the insurance company? Better still- can you fix your own car yourself with the insurance payout? We previously covered repairing your own car from an insurance payout but what happens if you decide to repair your car before any money hits your bank account?
We explore the concept of fixing a car yourself, getting someone you know to help out as well as some of the implications if you do decide to fix it yourself- which could be detrimental to your final payout.
The injury attorneys at Thompson Law Firm in Phoenix have significant experience in helping clients who have been involved in a car accident, including those who need extensive repair work done on their car. Fixing a car after an accident is necessary, and we can help make sure that you get the highest settlement possible. Our offices are conveniently located in Chandler, Peoria, and North Phoenix, and we can meet in-person or over the phone or video call.
If you are unsure whether or not you can afford an attorney, don’t worry. We only get paid when you settle. Check out our Attorney Fees Calculator to find out more.
Fixing a Car With the Insurance Payout
In simple terms; yes, you can repair your own car should you wish.
It does, of course, depend on the type of insurance cover you have; collision or comprehensive, as you’ll have a maximum cover cost to claim that would have been originally made clear to you when you took out your policy.
As long as the repairs you need to make sit within this, you’re absolutely within your rights to arrange your own car repairs. Our legal team would always recommend filing a claim and receiving the money first, but we totally understand that you may want to get cracking on repairs if you can- especially if you’re in the car repairs trade.
What if You’re a Mechanic (or know someone who is)? Will You Get the Same Payout?
If you’re a professional or know someone who is and they can give you an estimate on costs, you can then use it as a professional opinion when filing your accident case with an attorney, as this is typically what an insurance company would do. However, the risk is if you decide not to file with your insurance company first and either start repairs right away or get a valuation that’s lower than a third-party would give, you won’t be entitled to more money once they offer a payout.
Its always best to file with an insurance company first and assess the damage costs after, even if you’re an expert- or know someone else who is. There’s always a chance the quotes won’t be the same and you may end up losing out.
Weigh up the Personal Costs to You
As with everything in life, there are always pros and cons to every approach in accident law. While fixing a car may be a great opportunity for you, sadly it’s not always as simple for many others who are involved in an accident that wasn’t their fault.
Here at Thompson Law, we’d always recommend filing a claim with the insurer first. Once you’ve filed your claim, you can then look to repair the car however you see fit. They may take a long time to compensate you, at which point you’d be out of pocket with even more costs! Want to know more about what you should do next? Give us a call on (480) 634-7480 today. Our team is always happy to answer any questions you may have.