Can I Choose My Own Auto Mechanic After a Car Accident?

After a car accident, one of the most common questions is whether you can choose your own auto mechanic for vehicle repairs or if you are bound to use one selected by the insurance company. Under California law, you are within your rights to use your own auto mechanic, and your insurance company cannot prevent you from doing so.

Working with a highly qualified car accident lawyer at Eric Ratinoff Law Corp. can help, as we can protect your rights and communicate with insurance personnel on your behalf to uphold your best interests at all times.

How to Choose the Right Auto Mechanic After a Car Accident

You have the right to select your own auto repair shop following an accident, and the insurance company cannot deny you the option. While they may offer suggestions, the final decision rests with you.

Choosing the insurance company’s recommended repair shop comes with benefits for both you and the insurer, including the following:

  • You avoid direct dealings with the repair shop as the insurance company handles transactions
  • The insurance company guarantees the repair work, providing recourse if you’re unhappy with the outcome
  • Repairs can begin immediately without waiting for an adjuster’s approval

However, insurance companies receive discounts on parts and labor, which could lead to compromises, such as collaborating with shops that use cheaper, inferior parts to save costs. It’s important to research and find reputable repair shops, even those endorsed by insurance providers.

If you prefer a different repair shop, that’s entirely up to you. Insurance representatives might warn you of delays or lack of warranty coverage for repairs done outside their network, but there’s no need to worry. Choosing a reputable repair shop means professional estimators will efficiently manage the estimate and repair process. It’s in their interest to ensure customer satisfaction and maintain their reputation.

What Other Damages Can You Recover in a Car Accident Claim?

Beyond the immediate repairs to your vehicle, a car accident claim can encompass a range of damages, reflecting both the tangible and intangible losses you’ve suffered. Understanding the full scope of what can be recovered is essential to ensure you’re adequately compensated for the accident’s impact on your life.

You may recover the following economic and non-economic damages in a successful car accident claim:

  • Medical Expenses: Costs related to medical treatment following the accident – from emergency services and hospital stays to ongoing treatments, rehabilitation, and any future medical needs arising from your injuries.
  • Lost Wages: If injuries keep you from working, you can claim compensation for lost income. This also covers future earnings lost due to prolonged recovery or permanent disability.
  • Pain and Suffering: These damages compensate for the physical pain and emotional trauma you’ve endured as a result of the accident. It acknowledges the non-economic impact on your quality of life.
  • Loss of Consortium: If the collision affects your relationship with a spouse or partner, you may seek damages for loss of companionship, affection, and other aspects of the relationship affected by your injuries.
  • Diminished Value: After repairs, your vehicle might not be worth as much as it was before the accident. You can claim the difference in value as part of your compensation.

Consulting with a personal injury attorney at Eric Ratinoff Law Corp. can provide clarity and ensure you pursue all the compensation you deserve, covering both your current needs and any future implications of the accident.

Speak With the Sacramento Car Accident Lawyers at Eric Ratinoff Law Corp.

Navigating the aftermath of a car accident can be complex, especially when you’re focused on recovery and getting your life back on track. At Eric Ratinoff Law Corp., we can guide you through every step of the claim process, from evaluating the full scope of your damages to negotiating with insurance companies and, if necessary, fighting for you in court. With an attorney by your side, you are able to focus on your recovery while we pursue the compensation you deserve.

Contact one of our car accident lawyers today at (916) 970-9100 or fill out a contact form to discuss your case and explore your options for moving forward.