Insurance Claim Options

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Feb 11, 2012
Sandpoint, ID
I recently was in an accident where I was not at fault. The other driver hit my rear drivers side quarter panel at about 25mph. His insurance company has admitted fault.

Damage to my truck isn't visually too bad.

I immediately went to my local body shop and got an estimate for repairs. It's going to be about $3600+ depending on what they find in there.

The other insurance company sent their adjuster to come check my truck out and give an estimate of their own. Their estimate is about $1800 (shocking, right?). He tries to give me a check for $1800 on the spot. I laugh and say no thanks. He says that any other amounts can be reimbursed to the body shop if there is a discrepancy.

So, I turn that check down and send them the quote I got from the original body shop, along with 2 others that are all in line with the first (they range from $3500 to $4400). The adjuster calls and says he is sticking by his estimate because their estimates are blown out of proportion.

Now, my real question is this: Am I entitled to the amount that it will cost to fix my truck, or am I entitled to have my truck fixed? If I'm entitled to the amount that it will cost, I think it'd be a little crazy to spend $3800 fixing a cosmetic issue on a camping/offroad truck that is worth $4500, and I'd probably spend the money on some bumpers instead. But I'm not really sure what my options are.

If anyone has any suggestions or tips on dealing with this insurance company or the situation, I'd appreciate it. They are clearly trying to lowball me, but I'm not sure what my recourse is.
Maybe some folks here have had similar damage/repairs. Pictures?
ImageUploadedByIH8MUD Forum1423445096.653734.jpg
That's a ~4 Grand repair all day long.

They are trying to pork you like all insurance carriers do all day long, every single day. Call your agent and bring him in the game. Let the pros duke it out.
Thats way more than 1800. Your other guys are very close. I know shops that would charge 1800. to paint It. Ins. co. butts are so tight they will pull paint off a pencil. Tell them your neck hurts, Thats usually a 10 to 15, G minimum payout. There jerks. This makes me mad.
Your neck only hurts if it really hurts. Insurance fraud is a fellony and like it or not the odds are not in your favor.

You would be better off playing the "rental car" card. Apply that expense to the repair instead of taking a rental.
Yes, and 20 years later you realize you really did hurt your neck. That discomfort you feel now comes back later and then You have a problem. Just get paid for your truck or fixed . If you knew the truth about how they work It would make you ILL. Ins. companys own 80% of everything.
The insurance company's approach is customary. If you really want to get it fixed and not trying to get it totaled, take it to the shop and let them start working on it and let them hit the insurance company over the head for the rest. It's their responsibility to fix your car, whatever the cost. If that doesn't play out, get with your insurance company and see what they can do. Labor and paint times aren't a mystery, cars are fixed every day using industry standard.

My personal opinion, that's no less than $3k, plus more because it's going to have to be painted into that back door and up that c-pillar. And the quarter looks crumpled.
The "I think my neck hurts" is a card you can play to get them to change their attitude toward paying what you deserve to fix your truck. I am not recommending you lie about it, just make the comment, don't sign a release, and now you will be in the driver's seat.
Agree with Dan. No way could that be properly repaired for $1800. New body panels, bumper parts and flare, cutting and welding, painting,---.
Tell them you will call the the insurance commissioner, that will get their attention
I got rear ended by a girl going maybe 10 mph. She hit my DS bumper and pushed it forward into the rear quarter. It was $2200 to repair it. That was in 2004. No paint either...
Like Dan said get your company behind you. I would also get one more quote fir total 3. Ask to talk to the adjusters manager. Some adjusters are like bad cops , they will use their power to cheat you even though it's not even their $. I''ve had good ones and bad ones but in each situation I always got what I wanted with detailed documents.
Oh, and it would be a great time to buy a few tools, bang the damage out best you can and use the money elsewhere in the rig. That's if you wheel it and it's not just a road driver.
Ok, so after some negotiations, I have a check in hand for about $3600. This is probably less than the amount of the repairs, but the body shop people have assured me that this is a good starting point, and that they will bill the other insurance company for a proper repair if it is more than this. They are one of, if not the most reputable shop in the area, so I trust them.

Here's what I did, for those of you who may find yourself in this situation. I got 3 different estimates, and just wouldn't back down. The body shop eventually did some work on the back end to get the adjuster back up here to reevaluate his original estimate. Surprise surprise, he changed his opinion to the tune of almost double his original. Weird.

Now, for the real quandary. With a check for $3600, on a truck that is predominantly used for camping, fishing and off-roading, and will hopefully never, ever be sold, I'm wondering if I just pocket the money and spend it on some new toys for the truck. I've been driving it this way for about a month, and have not found any issues. I had an alignment shop put it up on a rack, and they couldn't find anything out of whack. The rear window doesn't leak and the gas cap still functions. It seems a little crazy to spend $3600 on a cosmetic issue when the truck is probably only worth about $6500 (assuming it's repaired). Opinions?
Toys. Buy yourself a hammer and dollie along with hydraulic arm with attachments to bend her back. Harbor freight has all this stuff cheap. Prob under 250 for all. bet you can get it very acceptable. . I rolled a Nissan pickup years ago and I pushed the whole roof back up with one of these presses. Doors lined back up and everything. Very handy tool. Very controllable.

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