If your vehicle is safe to drive after it is damaged, you may either bring your car to us for a free estimate or make an appointment – whichever is easiest for you.
Here are a few points to keep in mind about Estimates:
Estimates are Free!
When we do an estimate for your car, we will explain the claims process and answer any questions that you have about getting your car repaired. We will provide you with a printed copy and if you have your insurance company’s fax number, we will fax it to them for you.
Scheduling for an Estimate:
It is not necessary to schedule an appointment for an estimate, however if that is easier for you we will be happy to schedule one.
What if my insurance company writes my estimate?
If your insurance company writes your estimate, you will not need another estimate from us. We will work directly from the insurance estimate. If additional, accident related damage is found, we will contact your insurance company right away. New York State Regulation 64 allows your insurance company 48 hours to come to our facility to discuss the additional damage that was found. This often adds time to your repair.
What if I can’t drive my car?
If your car is not drivable, you can call us to tow it to our facility for an estimate. You can also have the car towed from the scene of an accident directly to our shop, either by us or another towing company. Our goal is to make this process as easy as possible so if you need special help please let us know.
Do I have to be present when you do the estimate?
No, you do not have to be present however we have to inspect the vehicle to write the estimate. We often write estimates for customers who are not able to be here at the time. Once we have completed the estimate, we will contact you and go over all of the details as well as answer any questions you may have.
Estimates are not the final bill for repair:
Our first estimate covers all of the visible damage. More times than not (9 times out of 10) further damage is found when we take your vehicle apart for repairs. This is normal and insurance companies expect this. We contact your insurance company to make sure that any additional accident related repairs are documented and covered before we finalize the repairs.
Do I have to get more than one estimate?
You are allowed, according to New York State Regulation 64, to decide where you want your vehicle repaired. In addition, you do not have to get multiple estimates and submit them before you get your car repaired. If you are going directly through an insurance carrier the only estimate that really matters is the one they write. It is our shop’s responsibility to make sure that all the hidden damage that was not on the original insurance estimate is identified, communicated, and fixed properly.
What if I do not want to use my insurance company for the repair?
We often have customers who do not want to put a claim into their insurance company. If you are paying directly for all repairs, we will contact you about all changes to the estimate prior to doing additional work to your vehicle. T.A.C.S. does not recommend paying out of pocket for any repair unless the damage is superficial or cosmetic. T.A.C.S. will advise you to use your insurance company if any hidden damage is suspected because the insurance company will cover the damage as long as it’s related to the accident. If hidden damage is found and you opted to not file an insurance claim you are responsible for the additional repair costs. T.A.C.S. is obligated to repair any damage to uphold the safety integrity of your vehicle.