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I think I'll take your advice and wait 6 months or so. Should I go ahead and contact the insurance company now? And how can I 'make' them pay the complete amount if they say they won't?


In the 35 or so years I've worked as an insurance agent, I've never seen hail dents pop out on their own when the sun shines - If they're not removed, the dimples are there to stay. There generally are limitations in reporting of losses - 6 months is too long. Insurers don't like paying inflated auto body repair prices. In the event of an additional loss, you also run the very likely possibility of having betterment taken on the subsequent loss, plus 2 deductibles. In catastrophe losses, insurers often must use what they call storm troopers - independent adjusters that they call in to help handle the overload of claims. In my experience, they sometimes undercut the adjustments, but usually all a shop has to do is call the insurer for a supplement to adequately complete repairs. Getting an insurer to repair the hail damage shouldn't be difficult, unless the cost of the repairs are greater than the car's value, less the salvage value they can get for the damaged vehicle... Generally, all you have to do is ask for repair. State insurance regulators would frown on an insurer very seriously for refusing repair or appropriate replacement and there generally are also arbitration clauses in policies. I've never known an insurer to hold a hail damage claim against an insured, raise premiums or decline or uprate new policies for them. The only reasons I would know they would not pay the full cost of repairs would be for betterment for preexisting damage or perhaps for a cash-in-lieu of repairs settlement, which is a negotiated matter.

HTH,
Bob
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