Consumer Rights

                             Insured Motorists' Rights in New Hampshire

1.Do I have the right to select the shop that will repair my vehicle?
  Yes. In order to speed up the repair process, leave your car at the
   repair shop you choose and notify your agent or insurer
.
2.Do I need to get more than one estimate?
  No. Notify your agent or insurer. Tell them where the vehicle is so
   they can send an appraiser to view the damage. In some cases your
   agent may be able to pay the claim out of his/her office. If
   another opinion is needed, the agent can hire an additional  damage appraiser to
   look at your vehicle
.
3.What if my insurer wants me to go to one of their selected shops?
   Definitely not! Some insurers have entered into contracts with
   repair shops that agree to repair your vehicle by the standards that
   the insurer sets. This can work against you, the owner. Most of
   these shops have had to make concessions to the insurer in order to
   get on the list. These types of concessions could affect the way
   your car is repaired. The use of imitation or used replacement parts
   and non recommended procedures may cause your vehicle to suffer
   diminished value and or safety related problems. Talk with the shop of your choice and get a true
   understanding of what operations are necessary to restore your
   damaged vehicle to pre-loss condition.
 
4.Must I notify my insurer before repairs have begun?
   Yes. Insurance policies require that you notify the company or your
   agent in the event of a loss. File a report and tell them where the
   damaged vehicle can be inspected
.

5.Who pays the repair bill?
  YOU MUST ARRANGE FOR PAYMENT. Your insurance policy states that the
   insurer will reimburse you for a covered loss, less any deductibles.

6.Who is responsible for the repairs performed?

  The shop. THAT IS WHY IT IS IMPORTANT TO SELECT A REPAIR FACILITY
   THAT IS PROPERLY TRAINED AND EQUIPPED TO REPAIR YOUR AUTO TO ITS PRE-LOSS CONDITION. Prior to repairs, you may want to ask the shop
   for a list of previous clients that you can call for information
.

7.If there is a problem with the completed repairs who should I contact
?
   First, the manager of the repair shop. If you still can not resolve
   the problem, contact the office of consumer protection. If you still
   are not satisfied, you may want to contact the district attorney or
   the better business bureau. As a last option you may have to
   consider a small claims court action.

8.If the shop of my choice and my insurer do not agree on how my car should be repaired or what it should cost, what can be done?

   Most policies provide a "Right To Appraisal" clause. Each party
   selects a competent appraiser and agree on an umpire. If the
   two appraisers disagree on the amount of the loss they submit
   their findings to the umpire. A decision of any two sets the
   amount of the loss.
   Another remedy is  a small claims action ,in court, against your insurer.
9.If my insurer fails to process my claim or pay the “Actual Cost of Repairs, what can I do?
    First, contact your insurance agent, then talk to the branch or
   regional claims manager of the insurance company. If that
   fails, contact the New Hampshire Division of Insurance at
   603-271-2261.
                                                   You Can Help

    Having your automobile damaged by accident can cause a great deal
     of frustration and inconvenience. If you take the time to help it
     will be less of a problem. The amount of your claim cannot be
     properly established while it sits in storage or while you drive
     it. Help yourself. Select a repair shop and have your automobile
     brought there.
     In many cases, due to vehicle complexity and design, it may be
     necessary to partially disassemble some components to find other
     areas of damage
.

The Importance Of Genuine Replacement Parts

Don't be fooled by "lifetime warranties" on imitation parts. Significant additional costs can be incurred if  these warranties do not include labor. If the insurance company insists on imitation parts, ask for proof that they are equal to genuine parts in terms of fit, finish and corrosion protection. In making your final decision of  which parts to use, consider the hidden cost of future repairs, reduced resale value, and the possible risk to passenger safety which you may have to face one day.

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