|State Farm's George Avery said there is potential for less detailed estimates. |
The CAA is requesting that the Department of Insurance aggressively enforce Insurance Code section 758 B (2) (c) that prohibits insurers from steering after the consumer has chosen a repair shop. The Department has previously indicated that an arbitrary cap by insurers is illegal. The CAA is asking the department to address and resolve this issue as soon as possible. The insurance code reads as follows:
Sen. Patrick Leahy, (D-Vt.), chairman of the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee, has introduced the Insurance Industry Competition Act. This legislation would remove the federal antitrust exemption from the insurance industry. Currently, the McCarran-Ferguson Act protects the insurance industry from federal antitrust laws.
Sen. Arlen Specter, (R-Pa.), Senate Judiciary ranking member, joined Leahy in introducing Senate Bill 618 – as did Sen. Harry Reid, (D-Nev.), Senate majority leader, and Sen. Trent Lott, (R-Miss.), Senate Republican whip.
A vehicle hits the Institute of Highway Safety bumper barrier. The results of the new crash tests reveal most car bumpers don't work in low speed crashes.
California Governor Gray Davis has signed into law SB 1146, a bill mandating that the independent aftermarket will have access to service information and tools necessary to repair and maintain vehicles equipped with on-board diagnostic computers (OBD systems).
As part of its strategic plan to create an online community for commerce, Ensera, Inc., www.ensera.com, eported today that it has finalized a progressive partnership agreement with BASF's Automotive Refinish Group.
Ensera, the Redwood Shores, California-based company is a leading provider of solutions that automate the marketplace process for the automotive collision repair industry.
If you think the collision repair industry is changing rapidly, spend a little time talking with the owner of your nearby auto salvage yard:
Seemingly conceding that its previous position on estimating system data was untenable, ADP announced in April it was putting on hold its plan to encrypt that data and make it unusable by unlicensed third parties such as Internet claims management companies.
California State Senator Jackie Speier (D - San Francisco/San Mateo) predicted that "there will be a battle in the legislature over quality crash parts" within the next year and that she may be "promulgating rules on anti-steering," an issue on which she expects State Insurance Commissioner Harry W. Low to take an aggressive attitude.
It is time for our community to call upon the true authority of the 1963 Consent Decree and utilize it as a tool to bring about a substantial change in the method in which consumer claims are handled in our collision repair environment.
When Allstate Corporation last month acquired Sterling Collision Centers Inc., a consolidator with 39 collision repair shops in seven states and nine metropolitan areas, it started a shockwave that resonated across the industry with as much thunder as the State Farm non-OEM parts verdict.
"If you're a good shop, you have nothing to worry about. If you're a bad shop, you have every reason to be concerned!" warned the California Bureau of Automotive Repair's Robert Trent. Trent, who works out of BAR's Oceanside office, was addressing the San Diego chapter of California Autobody Association at their July meeting. Trent and his associate Bill Neu discussed the BAR inspection program that began July 1. The inspection program was created by the Auto Insurance Fraud Act (SB 1998) of 2000.
New laws in China enable SEMA member companies to sell products legally, according to the Chinese Ministry of Commerce. This historic announcement was presented during a recent meeting at SEMA headquarters in Diamond Bar, California, and was received with appreciation and enthusiasm by the association's leadership.
The major paint companies, struggling to overcome federal charges of price-fixing and their largely unsuccessful and expensive "shop investment" programs of the '90's are now focusing on "value added" shop management programs to attract and retain customers.
Throughout the Las Vegas Convention Center the 35,000 attendees at last month's NACE seemed to be talking as much about the event itself as they did about the usual industry announcements, speakers and the "good deals" to be had on the trade show floor.
On the heels of a federal antitrust investigation into price-fixing by paint manufacturers in the automotive refinish industry, at least four lawsuits have been filed around the country by paint distributors and body shops accusing the world's five largest paint makers of price-fixing.
Auto body shops in California continue to get a black eye as the Bureau of Automotive Repair's (BAR) reinspection program picks up steam. A preliminary report issued in late January showed that 43% of cars inspected so far had evidence of fraud, with an average of $586 in overcharges for parts not used or labor not performed. BAR says that it has already inspected 507 vehicles and found evidence of fraud in 217, most often billing for parts not used or labor not supplied.
California Autobody Association past presidents gathered at the annual meeting to honor the association's milestone year. From left to right John Loftus, Kelly McCarty, Don Feeley,Jr., Maureen Holmes, Jack Caldwell, Rick Johnson, Chuck Bistagne, Ed Van Klavern, Russ Scamara, Ron Guilliams (seated), Rick Reiss, Bill Rupp, Joe Boivin and Warwick Bryan.
Farmers Insurance is pushing to elect California State Assemblyman Tom Calderon (D-Montebello) as the new Insurance Commissioner of California, and to aid in that effort it is apparently soliciting campaign contributions from companies it does business with including its Circle of Dependability (COD) DRP shops.
He laughs when he's asked about Progressive's "Concierge" program. His shop has participated in this DRP program's trial run since last fall. "It makes me think of a twist on that old Oldsmobile ad slogan: 'This is not your father's DRP'," said the second-generation East Coast shop owner who spoke about the Progressive program on the condition that neither his real name nor his business location (not even the state) be revealed.
Listed below is the proposed act with the reasons for our opposition in italics. These are OKABA’s reasons for opposing. OKABA offers this report, so it is clear, OKABA’s decision is definitive.
The bill declares that Oklahoma vehicle owners should have the right to:
The Right to Repair Act introduced in Oklahoma has stirred up support from CARE and opposition from OKABA towards the pending legislation.
Democrat Lucky Lamons introduced House Bill 1584 in Oklahoma legislature on February 6. The legislation seeks to allow motorists to choose where, how and by whom to have their vehicles repaired.
Sandy Bass-Cors, a representative of The Coalition for Auto Repair Equality, CARE, is in support of this bill. She said that independent collision repair facilities would benefit from this legislation.
A dynamic docket of topics and speakers are in store for those individuals attending the Women’s Industry Network (WIN) conference scheduled for April 29 through May 1 in Phoenix, Arizona.
The conference will cut across functional job lines and bring together female shop owners, technicians, and service and product providers for a series of inspiring speakers and informative seminars.
Allstate Insurance Company has announced that it plans to build six new Sterling/Allstate locations in the Dallas/Fort Worth area. All locations will be new construction and be approximately 16,500 sq. ft. of office and shop area. Allstate currently has 39 other locations around the country and eight located in the Houston area.
The push for VIN Disclosure legislation in 2007 took a major step forward with Senator Trent Lott’s (R-MS) introduction of the “Consumer Access to Total Loss Vehicle Data Act” (S.545).
The ARA said Senator Lott’s bill exemplifies his commitment to stem total loss vehicle-related fraud, theft and other illegal total loss vehicle activities, not only in the U.S., but worldwide. ARA applauds Senator Lott for his leadership in the effort to stem the abusive practices associated with title fraud.
The preliminary data from the California Bureau of Automotive Repair (BAR) auto body reinspection program that has found evidence of fraud in 43% of vehicles inspected is unlikely to change significantly when the final report is issued early next year, according to Dan Povey, the Sacramento-based program manager. "We have a solid six months of data in the computer. Based on my experience, the data from the first six months is usually indicative of what the final numbers will look like."
Used or "recyclable" parts were the focus of discussion during a number of other presentations at the Collision Industry Conference (CIC) held in mid-March in Nashville, Tennessee.
GM says its recent evaluation of fenders and hoods with CAPA stickers proved that they don't meet GM specs for fit, finish, material content and assembly characteristics. The GM hood was up to 40% stronger and 80% harder than the CAPA hoods.
Three national collision industry associations are working together to enhance the accuracy and functionality of the estimating systems used by the collision repair community to fix today’s high-tech vehicles. The Alliance of Automotive Service Professionals (AASP), the Automotive Service Association (ASA) and the Society of Collision Repair Specialists (SCRS) have teamed up to examine and enhance the content of the data found in the industry’s leading estimating systems.
A message to CCRE members
To all CCRE member shops, the following is an example of what CCRE is actively doing constantly on your behalf. The following response from CCRE was recently entered into the debate at the Ohio DOI, concerning pressure from insurers and imitation parts certifiers such as CAPA, to change the wording of existing Ohio Rules to eventually have imitation parts be considered the same as OEM.
CCRE actively opposed such changes when they were twice considered, on a national level, at NCOIL meetings. Now, it appears that insurers and their imitation parts certifiers are going to go to individual state legislators to try to accomplish this on a state-by-state basis. Ohio appears to be among the first states to be hit. Your state may be next. So, watch what’s happening in your state, and keep CCRE informed. Together we can keep this “mad dog” at bay.
I have a friend who made so much money in the body shop business that he had to retire because he was paying too much in taxes.
It was obvious my friend, whose nickname is Fast Eddie, knew how to make a profit. He made a profit in large part because he knew how to write an estimate. His goal was always to write a complete estimate from the beginning. He wrote every estimate himself, taking whatever time he needed—sometimes hours—to tear down the car. He ordered every part, including nuts and bolts, needed to fix the car. Once the estimate was written, he pulled the car out of his shop and stored it in a lot across the street.