Designed to assist you in handling claims with your own insurance company

Do I have the right to take my car to the shop of my choice?

Yes - You may select the repair facility of your choice unless your insurance policy specifies otherwise.

Should my insurance company be notified before repairs?

Yes - your insurance policy generally states that, if requested, you must file a sworn proof of loss, exhibit the damaged property, and submit to examination under oath.

Do I need to contact more than one shop for an estimate?

No - Generally, one estimate from the shop of your choice is required, unless your insurance policy specifies otherwise. California State law requires you be given a written estimate before starting repairs.

Am I responsible for the cost of repairs?

Yes - You are usually responsible to the repair facility for payment of repairs unless your insurance policy specifies otherwise. Ordinarily, if you are insured, your insurance policy states that the insurance company will pay you for the loss, less any applicable deductibles or depreciation. Any arrangements for payments by your insurance company are your responsibility.

Is the repair facility responsible for the repairs performed on my car?

Yes - The Automobile Repair Act of 1971 requires all repair dealers to be registered with the State of California and to post a sign. This Act [Section 9884.7(1)(g)] states that the Department of Consumer Affairs may invalidate the registration of the repair dealer for a number of causes, including:

If I am having difficulties with my insurance company, do I have recourse?

Yes - First consult with your insurance agent or broker. Then, if your problems still have not been resolved, consult with the Department of Insurance, State of California, at their office in Sacramento, San Francisco, Los Angeles, or San Diego, or telephone their toll free line: 1-800-927-4357

If my insurance company does not agree with the amount of loss, do I have recourse other than the State of California Department of Insurance?

Yes - Your insurance policy may provide that, when the insured and insurer fail to agree on the amount of loss, both parties are entitled to arbitration.

Can an Insurer require, direct, suggest or recommend that your automobile be repaired at a specific shop?

No - Unless the referral is expressly requested by you; or you have been informed in writing of the right to select the repair facility; and

The insurer that elects to repair a vehicle directs, suggests or recommends that a specific repair shop be used, shall cause the damaged vehicle to be restored to its condition prior to the loss at no additional cost to you other than as stated in the policy or as otherwise allowed by law.

Can my insurer require me to use non-original equipment manufacturer (non-OEM) replacement crash parts for the repair of my car?

No - No insurer shall require the use of non-OEM replacement crash parts in the repair of an automobile unless:

For further information, refer to:

State of California Department of Insurance
1407 Market Street
San Francisco, California 94103
State of California Department of Insurance
600 S. Commonwealth
Los Angeles, California 90005
State of California Department of Insurance
700 L Street
Sacramento, California 95814
State of California Department of Insurance
1350 Front Street, Room 5954
San Diego, California 92101

In accordance with the Automotive Repair Act of 1971, A customer shall receive:

Bureau of Automotive Repair
Toll-Free Telephone (800)952-5210
Monday through Friday

E-mail at: