• What Happens When Your Car Is Totaled?

    It’s commonly assumed that a car is totaled when it’s completely smashed and damaged past the point of repair. But you may be surprised to learn that, even if the auto body shop can repair your car, the insurance company might consider it to be totaled. Dealing with a totaled car can be a major headache, but a helpful body shop staff member can help you figure out your options. Here’s a quick crash course in what happens when your car is totaled.

    How Insurance Carriers Define Total Loss

    Total loss can mean different things for different cars. If you own a 10-year-old Dodge Neon, even a small amount of damage could be considered a total loss. If you own a two-year-old Porsche, the insurance company will pay out far more in repairs, rather than declaring it a total loss. Total loss is calculated by comparing the cost of collision repairs to the actual market value of the car. If the cost to repair the car is greater than what the car is worth, it’s a total loss.

    How Much Money You’ll Get to Replace Your Car

    The good news is that you can get a check from the insurance carrier that you’ll use to buy another car. The insurance company will pay you the actual cash value of your car, less your deductible. If your car was worth $10,000 and your deductible is $1,000, you’ll get a check for $9,000.

    What Happens If You Still Owe Money on Your Car

    In some cases, people are still paying off the auto loan when their car gets totaled. You’ll have to talk with your lender about this situation. It’s typical for the lender to be reimbursed first. Any remaining funds will be released to you. If you owe more on your car than what the insurance company is paying, you’ll hopefully have gap coverage on your insurance policy. Loan gap coverage will protect you from repaying the loan on a car that has been totaled.

    The first step in moving forward from a crash is to bring your car to Michael J’s Body Shop. Our highly trained technicians will do a thorough evaluation of the collision damage, and email you an estimate for your convenience. Call our auto body shop in San Jose at (408) 279-2070 to get the process started.

  • How We Work with Your Insurance Company

    After any car crash, the most important consideration is whether anyone has been injured. If there are no serious injuries, your thoughts will turn to the insurance company and what a hassle it can be to deal with the paperwork. That’s one reason why so many residents of San Jose choose Michael J’s Body Shop. For more than two decades, our auto body shop has been busy building relationships with auto insurance providers to give our customers the best possible experience.

    We’ll help you figure out your coverage.

    If there’s one thing that just about everyone can agree on, it’s that auto insurance is confusing. If you aren’t sure which collision repairs are covered or what your deductible is, just call Michael J’s and chat with one of our friendly experts. We’ll be glad to help you sort through the confusing terminology in your insurance policy so that you know exactly what is covered and what you can expect to pay.

    We’ll handle most of the paperwork for you.

    Whether it’s hardcopy or virtual, paperwork is always a pain. We know you don’t have time to deal with it, especially since the inconveniences of a car crash are already putting a strain on your schedule. We can give you a helping hand with the insurance paperwork. Just give us your claim number, claim representative’s name, and the phone number of your insurance provider.

    We’ll chat with the insurance carrier for you (and deal with the adjuster and appraiser!).

    People often find it nerve-wracking to talk to the insurance carrier reps. It’s hard to know what to say and what not to say. We’ll gladly handle most of the communication with your insurance carrier for you. Our auto collision center will even liaise with the insurance adjuster and appraiser!

    Here at Michael J’s Body Shop in San Jose, it’s important to us that our customers have a hassle-free, positive experience, and get back on the road quickly. Call us today at (408) 279-2070 and let us know how we can help you. Ask us about our free pick-up service, rental car assistance, and extended business hours!

  • How Does Auto Claim Adjustment Work?

    After experiencing a car collision or otherwise sustaining damage to your vehicle, you will need to talk to your insurance agent. If your vehicle has suffered a substantial amount of damage, collision repair can get expensive; however, your auto claim adjuster may be able to help. Read on for a brief overview of how auto claim adjustment works.

    Discussing the Evaluation Report

    Once you have ensured that everyone involved in the accident is okay and the aftermath has been cleared up, you will eventually talk to your auto claims adjuster about the evaluation report. This conversation will determine how much money you will receive from your insurance company after considering the damages done to your vehicle. The auto claim adjuster will offer a certain amount and explain how this number was calculated. The evaluation report uses comparables, which are other comparable vehicles that can be averaged to find a fair market value for your particular case.

    Response from the Customer

    At this point the customer can ask questions or express concerns regarding the total that was decided upon. It is important to realize that the value of any vehicle can depreciate over time, and the sentimental feelings you may have are not objective. However, you can use this opportunity to state your case to your claim adjuster to find out if there is any flexibility you can work with; in some cases you may be able to increase the amount of money that you receive.

    Settling the Claim

    The auto claim adjustment process ends when the claim is settled. This means that both the adjuster and the customer agree on the amount to be paid, which is the inherent goal of the conversation. You will then receive the agreed upon amount from your insurance company.

    If you have more questions about the auto claim adjustment process, contact Michael J’s Body Shop or visit our website. We are an auto body shop in San Jose that specializes in paintless dent removal and auto collision repair. Feel free to give us a call at (408) 279-2070 or stop in and see us today.