Unfortunately, every year approximately 6.5 million people in the USA are involved in a car accident. We have provided the following guide plus a question and answer section to help people who have been in an accident and wonder - "What Now?"

You just had a wreck! Don't panic! we'll work through this together!

First things first. Make sure everyone is okay. Are you okay? Are your passengers okay? What about the passenger(s) in the other car. If you are experiencing pain in your neck or back, and your car is safe, then you might want to stay in your car until paramedics arrive. The same is true of any other driver's or passengers. If you feel you are able or if you feel your car is not safe, then remove yourself and any other passengers or drivers to safety. Call 911! Wait for the police to arrive. Even if no one seems to be injured, wait for the proper authorities. Remove yourself a safe distance from traffic or any dangerous situations.

Once everyone is safe and calm, then the next step is to trade information with the other party. If there is no other party then it is a good idea to write down a brief description of the events as they occurred.

Call Insurance
Whether the accident was your fault or the fault of someone else, it is important that you call your insurance company to let them know what happened. The sooner you make this call the sooner your car gets fixed. Be sure and write down your claim number before you get off the phone with your insurance company.

The law states that you have the choice of where your vehicle gets repaired. Insurance companies will often refer you to a repair shop, but it is only a suggestion and not a requirement that you get your vehicle repaired at the suggested shop. In looking for a shop that can repair your vehicle, don't forget to consider these things: Quality: Every shop will tell you they are the best, but how does their work look? Check out their work, or ask for referrals. Warranty: Do they offer any sort of guarantee on their work? Service: Honestly, if you don't get a good level of service when you take your car in for an estimate, the chances are very good that you won't receive good service throughout the repair process. Established: Sure they may have a great warranty, but will they be here in a year to honor that warranty? Make sure your shop isn't a fly by night operation. Extras: After all the digging you will find there are a few quality shops out there. And they can all fix your vehicle... so the question becomes, which one goes the extra mile? Does one shop stand out? Does one shop have something that no other shop has?

If the accident was your fault, do you have rental coverage? If you don't, your shop may be able to provide you a discount rate for a rental. If you do have rental coverage on your policy, then you have 30 days (including weekends) of rental coverage per claim. If you were not at fault (someone else's insurance is paying for your repairs) then Texas state law requires that you are provided a rental car for as long as it takes to repair your car (up to 30 days).

Bring It In
Call your chosen repair shop and schedule a time to drop off the car (if you already have an estimate) or call and schedule a time to get an estimate. Please remember to always remove your personal items before drop off.

The Process
Our process is as follows (other shops will be similar):

  1. Estimate
  2. Incoming Inspection
  3. Disassembly
  4. Prep
  5. Paint
  6. Assembly
  7. Final Inspection
Other possible steps: Mechanical and Frame. You can read all about our process by clicking here.

Pay Your Deductible
Most shops will require that you pay them the full amount of your deductible upon picking up your completed vehicle. If you are unable to pay your deductible, contact your repair shop as they may have some options available for paying the deductible.

What are the different claim types?
Comprehensive - You caused the accident, but there is no other party involved. Damage just to your vehicle. Deductible: $50 - $1000 depending on your insurance plan.
Liability - You did not cause the accident, but your insurance is picking up the bill. Deductible: $0.
Uninsured Motorist - You did not cause the damage to your vehicle. The other party doesn't have insurance, or there is no other party. Ex. Hit and run. Deductible: $250 state wide.
Vandalism - Someone vandalised your car. Deductible: $50 - $100 depending on your insurance plan.
Collision - You caused the accident and there was another party. Deductible: $50 - $1000 depending on your insurance plan.
What is a total loss and how does that affect me?
When a vehicle is judged (by insurance) to cost more to fix than the vehicle is worth, the vehicle is considered a total. If this happens to you, you have two options.
1 - You can allow the insurance company to take the vehicle. They will give you an amount for your car based upon the condition of the car, the mileage, and current value of the car.
2 - You can buy back the wrecked car. Some people do this with a car that isn't wrecked that badly. The insurance will still give you a predetermined amount for your vehicle, but if you choose to buy it back, they will subtract the salvage value of the wrecked car from the amount you will get.
What is the difference between oem and after market parts?
There are actually 4 major types of parts:
LKQ - These parts are good parts taken off of salvaged cars. EX. A car was a front end total, but the back end parts are still in good condition.
Reconditioned - Previously wrecked parts factory repaired then resold.
After-Market - Third party vendor manufactured parts.
OEM - Original Equipment Manufactured by the car manufacturer.
Who pays for the tow truck?
Typically the repair shop will pay the tow truck company. If the tow is covered by insurance then the insurance company will reimburse the shop. If it is not covered, then the tow bill will need to be paid when you pick up the car.
What about glass?
In most cases glass is covered in your policy. The deductible can be anywhere from $50 - $100. Check with your insurance agent to make sure you are covered when it comes to glass.
What if I decide not to fix my car?
If you are insured and you do not have a lien holder, you may opt to have the car not fixed. The insurance company will estimate the value of the claim (what it would take to fix it) and provide you a payment for the value of the claim. If however you have a lien holder, you are expected to fix your car or pay off your lien.
Why is my repair delayed?
The causes for delays can be any number of things. Parts can be difficult to find, especially for older model cars. Insurance companies can also provide delays. Additional damage can be found during the repair process.
Will the color you paint my car match my current paint?
Our paint technicians will do everything possible to match your paint color. Our goal is to make your car, "Good As New." There will be times that sun, time or normal wear and tear change the shade of your paint. We can try to adjust for this, but our goal is to match your original paint color. Sometimes we include blending into adjacent areas to match paint color.
The estimator said my frame is bent, does that mean my car is totaled?
Not necessarily. We have highly trained technicians and high tech equipment that allows us to get your frame "Good As New". If you do have frame damage and your car isn't a total, this is just another step in our highly efficient process of repairing your car.
What does diminshed value mean?
This means that the value of your car has decreased due to the accident. If you are the claimant in an accident, you can claim diminshed value to bolster your claim as a result of a loss in your vehicle's value.
1. Let the insurance company know you are claiming Diminshed Value.
2. You must get a Diminshed Value report from a licensed agent.
3. This can only happen after repairs have been completed.