An auto accident is a very traumatic time for motorists and they often have questions. These are some of the most common questions that we hear. If you have additional questions, please feel free to contact us.

Do I have the right to select the shop of my choice to repair my vehicle?

Yes.  As the vehicle owner, you decide where, when, and how your vehicle is repaired.

Must I notify my insurance company?

If you plan to submit a claim for the repairs, then yes.  It is best to notify your insurance company or agent as soon as you can after the accident.  This must be done by the driver involved in the accident, and we will be happy to assist you in this process if needed.

Do I need to get more than one estimate?

No. Only one estimate of damage is necessary from the repair facility of your choice. However, the insurance company may also want to have their own adjuster inspect the damage.

Why are estimates so different from one shop to another?

One of the reasons our estimate may differ from another shop is because we believe in writing a thorough estimate up front. Necessary repairs may be left out of another estimate and supplemented later making the dollar amount initially appear much less. In the end, once the repairs are complete, the total cost of repairs would be very similar.

One of the things that sets us apart from other shops is the detailed steps we take in repairing a car, which may also account for any differences. For example, when we do any painting, we remove moldings, emblems, and other items that would get in the way of painting your vehicle as completely as possible. This is known as “R&I” (or remove and install). Our goal with every vehicle is to bring your car back to the way it was before the accident.

What does R & I mean? (Remove and Install)

This is a term that refers to the removal of trim pieces (moldings, door handles, emblems, etc.) from the vehicle so the paint may be properly applied. In order to guarantee our paint work, we do this as a standard practice on all repairs.

What do I do if my vehicle is not safe to drive?

Simply have it towed to the repair shop of your choice.  Call MJ Collision Center and we will arrange towing for you.  When you notify your insurance company about the accident, tell them that the vehicle is not drivable and that it may be inspected at MJ Collision Center.

What do I do if the repair shop I choose and my insurance company disagree about how my car should be repaired or what the repairs entail?

Occasionally, the repair shop’s estimate differs from the insurance adjuster’s estimate. We will negotiate with the insurance company and obtain an agreed price before we begin repairs. No matter what the end result of this process is, we don’t ever compromise the quality of the repairs we perform.

Who is responsible for paying the repair bill?

Most insurance companies will pay us directly for the cost of repairs, less any deductible which you are responsible for at the time the completed vehicle is delivered.  Some insurance companies will send a check directly to the vehicle owner, which can be signed over to MJ Collision Center at the time of repairs.

How do I know if I need to pay a deductible?

If the claim is going through your insurance company, you will need to determine how much your deductible is based on what your policy states. Deductibles can commonly range anywhere from $250.00 to $1,000.00. The amount of the deductible also depends on whether the claim is considered a comprehensive claim or a collision claim.  It is very important to check with your insurance agent to determine the type of deductible. We can assist in this process if needed.  If you are using another party’s insurance because you were not at fault, you do not need to pay a deductible.

When and how do I pay my deductible?

Your deductible is due when you pick up the vehicle after repairs are complete. Payment for the deductible may be made by cash, check, Visa, MasterCard, Discover, or American Express.

Can you “bury the deductible” for me?

Although we understand that the accident is an inconvenience to you and an expense you weren’t exactly expecting, to “hide” or “bury” your deductible in the repair costs is unethical and to many insurance companies is considered fraud and we know you wouldn’t want to be involved in any fraudulent activity!  The way insurance policies are written, the first portion of the repair is the deductible, and the costs after that are the responsibility of the insurance company.  So if the repairs are less than the initial estimate, the refund legally needs to go back to the insurance company as long as the total is still over the deductible amount.

Who is responsible for the quality of repairs?

The repair facility.  While some insurance companies may tell you that they warranty the repairs if you go to their shop, it is the repair facility’s responsibility to perform proper repairs on your vehicle and to stand behind those repairs. Therefore, it is important for you to select a repair shop with properly trained technicians and the equipment necessary to restore your vehicle to its pre-accident condition. In the event that you have questions or concerns regarding your repair, contact the repair facility first.

What can I do if I have a problem with the way my insurance company is processing or settling my claim?

You have the right to contact the Wisconsin Insurance Commissioner’s Office, the agency charged with regulating and disciplining the insurance industry. The Commissioner’s Office cannot by itself resolve damage, coverage or liability disputes, but it can obtain written explanations from insurance companies regarding their positions. Having a written explanation may be useful to you if you have to resort to litigation to resolve a dispute with an insurance company.

How will I know if my insurance company is intending to have non-original replacement (aftermarket) parts used in the repair of my vehicle?

The insurer is required, by law, to notify the insured if “non-original manufacturer replacement parts” (aftermarket) are intended to be used in the repair of the vehicle. Notice shall be in writing but a verbal statement is allowed if it is followed by a written notice within three days. Some terms that identify non-original replacement parts are A/M, aftermarket, quality replacement part, QRP, CAPA, PXN, competitive part, or economy part. Remember that aftermarket parts are not manufactured or warranted by the manufacturer of your vehicle. These parts are also not crash tested for structural integrity like factory parts are.

Will aftermarket parts be used on my vehicle?

At MJ Collision Center, it is our policy to only use body parts that were produced by the original vehicle manufacturer. Most other shops are willing to use imitation parts manufactured with much less quality because that is what the insurance company asks for. We believe in performing a quality repair on every vehicle, and that can only be done with OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) parts.

How do I know the repairs will be done right?

We are able to offer a lifetime written warranty because of our quality repair processes. Our technicians are I-CAR trained and also ASE and PPG certified, which gives you added assurance that the job will be done right. You are always welcome to view our facility, talk to our staff and call former customers to check up on us.