Stopping Car Repairs

#1

I was in my first car accident (not my fault) right before Christmas. I have been having the wort time dealing with car insurance. First I was told they would fix the car, now they want to total it. It has just been a mess.



My question is, can I stop car repairs after they have started? I had been told that my insurance would direct pay the auto shop a portion of the repair costs and then I could cover the rest. Now I am tols they just want to total the car. the problem is that I had the auto body shop start repairs on the car. The auto shop had only been working on the car for a day when I called them that evening, after I had the new information dropped on me, and asked them to stop the car repairs. No one protested but I will call them in the morning to make sure they really stop the repairs. At least until I get everything figured out. Do I have the right to order the shop to stop repairs? what will I be liable for if I decided not to have the car repaired? I imagine I will be liable for any work already done but is there anything else they could demand?



This whole process has been such a mess. I do not feel like I can turn to the insurance company or the body shop for any information that is in my favor.

#2

Yes you may stop repairs after they have started but you will need to pay the shop for worked already performed and any parts restocking fees.

If the ins. comp. said to proceed and then you told the shop to start, then the ins. comp. said total loss, then the ins. comp. should pay the shop for worked performed.

#3

It’s YOUR car…of course you have the right.

First mistake is that you should NEVER start repairs until you get the check from the insurance company. Or a statement in WRITING that the repairs will be covered. The insurance company should have informed you LONG ago if they were totaling the car or not…like within 48 hours of the accident.

Second…You can still repair the car. Once totaled and you settle with the insurance company the insurance company then owns the car. You can buy it back from them and get it fixed if you want to. I’ve done this a couple of times. But make sure the car is really worth it.

#4

You must talk to the auto repair shop and the insurance company. There has been miscommunication and that needs to be dealt with. There must be actual words passing to and from all the involved parties.
If the insurance company “totals” the car, you can buy it from them for a few hundred dollars. Then, you could just have the things repaired which affect safety and driveability. The cosmetic repairs are what costs the lions share; so, you have choices to do them, or not.