Should I Send a Photo of My Car Damage for an Insurance Estimate

No. If you don’t want to get screwed by your insurance company after a car accident, learn the “Just Say No” Technique.

Insurance companies like Liberty Mutual, Allstate and Esurance advertise how quick and easy they make it for you to get your car repaired after an accident by using their insurance estimate app.

Just take a photo with their insurance claim estimate app and they’ll send you a check!

But should you send your photos? Just Say No!

These are not accident scene photos the insurance companies are asking for. These are photos you can take at home of the collision damage to your car (not if your car was towed from the accident).

Photo showing collision damage for insurance company

Take a picture of this damage but don’t send it to your insurance company for an estimate before you see a body shop and speak with a personal injury lawyer

Making Your Life Easy Only Sounds Great

Will it make your life easy if the insurance company really did pay you 100% of what it will cost to fix your car? No!

After you get a check, you still have to take your car to the body shop. Using the auto claim app won’t magically fix your car. It only lets you get a check before you go to the auto body shop but your body shop doesn’t need the check before you get there. So using an app won’t save you any time.

If you have to take your car to the auto body shop, let your body shop make your life easy and let them deal with your insurance company so you’ll get the right amount of money needed and let your body shop fight with the insurance company. Many body shops will even get the other car’s insurance company to pay for your damage.

Insurance companies enlist credible news agencies that simply parrot what the insurance companies tell them. CNBC wrote in Instant insurance claims—apps for your car crash, “Next time you’re in a fender bender, there’s good reason to have your phone on hand—it could speed up your insurance claim.”

But beware! Insurance companies developed the collision estimate app and this brilliant marketing idea to save a lot of money, not to make your life easy.

Insurance Companies Use Collision Damage Estimate Apps to Save Money Two Ways

  1. The insurance companies don’t have to pay appraisers whose job it is to report every detail and every part that has to be replaced or repaired.
  2. Because they’re not using an appraiser, the insurance companies can pay you less money. People have reported receiving as little as 10% of what they needed to fix their car.

How can you be sure that you won’t get enough money to fix your car if you send the damage photos to your insurance company?

Simple. How can anyone tell from photos what damage you have underneath the sheet metal and what damage might exist that isn’t seen in your photos?

Allstate advertises their QuickFoto Claim app “helps you get paid quicker so you can get back to normal faster.”

But look at the car in this Allstate video. How can you tell if the radiator and other parts under the hood were damaged? You can’t!

When you take your car to a body shop after using a Collision Damage Estimate App, it can take a lot longer to get your car fixed while the body shop fights to get the money needed to fix all the damage on your car.

What Can Happen When You Use an Insurance Claim App?

  1. You may get paid a lot less than the cost of the damage, possibly as much as 8-10 times less.
  2. When you take your car to an auto body shop, the body shop will probably not be able to fix your car for the amount you were paid, so they will have to reopen your claim and wait for an appraiser to come to look at your car.
  3. Because you have already submitted photos and your insurance company now thinks you have a minor claim, you just made negotiating more difficult for your body shop and they may have a fight on their hands. This can delay your claim even further.
  4. You may get a check for $1,200 and decide to keep the money without fixing the car but there could be thousands of dollars of hidden damage you weren’t paid for.
  5. If you keep the money without fixing your car, you could devalue your car by thousands of dollars. You won’t even know until you try to sell your car and find it’s worthless.
  6. If you keep the money without fixing your car, you could be driving a car that isn’t safe and shouldn’t be on the road.

Watch FOX 61 and Tony Ferraiolo of a state Auto Body Association and see the problems you might encounter if you use an insurance accident app!

What’s Easier Than an Insurance Collision Damage Estimate App?

  1. Take or tow your car to your auto body shop immediately, then call your insurance company and have the insurance company look at your car only at your auto body shop.
  2. Never send photos of your car’s damage to your insurance company.
  3. Never let your insurance company look at your car at your house.
  4. If you’re injured, call a personal injury lawyer immediately.

That’s easier than using an insurance collision damage estimate app!

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More Do’s & Don’ts of what you should do after a car accident

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Please take a look at some of our settlements and verdicts.

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Attorney Rob Plevy, Esq.         Attorney Phil Franckel, Esq.

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