The internet has allowed scammers to be able to create fraudulent insurance claims easier than ever. The auto glass industry is no exception, with more reports of scammers coming in from across the United States. You may think that you would be able to anticipate these potential scams, but each year con artists become more and more common with a few classic trends.
The majority of these scams are after faulty insurance claims where the salesperson is not affiliated with any company or overcharges your insurance company. Falling for these scams can result in increased insurance rates, losing your claim, or a poorly installed windshield, which can be dangerous to the driver and others.
The best defense you can have in order to avoid these scammers would be to do research online before deciding what auto glass repair shop you want to work with. Shops with multiple reviews and customer testimonials will be a good way to assure you will not be taken advantage of. We are going to show you some of the most common scams and some key points that could tip you off is something sounds “phishy”.
Before we dive into some of the ways you may be scammed, we want to show you some of the possible warning signs. One of the classic ways these scams are conducted is through by going door-to-door. If there are door-to-door sales people you must check for company logos or vehicles that backup their claims. Often these scammers will be wearing street clothes or professional clothes with nothing of their company on them.
In many cases, these potential scammers will be waiting at frequent stops like gas station or near auto shops. They may approach you offering solutions without you having to put a penny. A good way to protect yourself is by taking time to lookup or research what they say as to make sure you don’t make any poor decisions. You can also take a look at some of the scams that the Coalition Against Insurance Fraud put together.
One of the most interesting parts about these scams are that many times the perpetrator will tell you that you need your windshield replaced when there is no damage. Now why would anyone do this? Its because the sales people will tell you that they can replace the windshield at no cost to you. If someone continuously tells you that you will not have to pay anything then odds are they might be trying to scam you.
There may be a small scratch or no damage at all when you are approached about your windshield. You will be told to submit a claim to your insurance company that you have more damage to your windshield than is real so that they can cover your claim. This may seem like a deal that is too good to be true because it is. Some scammers will go as far as to do the service for you and submit multiple invoices for windshields after leaving you with the bill.
Currently, in Arizona, it is a class 6 felony for an individual to sell or repair auto glass and knowingly submit a faulty insurance claim. Typically there will be multiple crimes bundled together because if individuals are filing faulty insurance claims odds are they have a sham business or are impersonating a legit company. With more people using the internet to find repair shops, remember to do your research and never take someone’s word when it comes to auto glass repair.
What’s being done
Many states are currently in the process of putting additional legislation in place to reduce auto glass insurance fraud specifically. Both the private sector and the House of Representatives is on board as in Arizona the Unlawful Practices: Auto Glass Repair Bill passed with no push back. This is great progress because it puts additional responsibility onto insurance companies to have specific units dedicated to detecting and avoiding fraud.
Arizona is one of the current hotbeds for fraudulent auto glass repair scams, making this a huge push in the right direction. The bill targets illegal marketing tactics which is meant to target salesman going door-to-door or into corporate centers.
At GlassBiller we strive to work with only the most trusted names in auto glass repair and replacement. We work with auto glass stores around the country providing them with a fully integrated auto shop software to assure their paperwork is squared away for customers and insurance companies. For more information on GlassBiller you can submit a contact form request and we will be in touch with you soon!