Can I File a Hail Damage Claim and Keep the Money

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Can I File a Hail Damage Claim and Keep the Money?

Hail damage leaves your car looking beat up. If your vehicle was recently caught in a hailstorm, you might wonder, “Should I claim hail damage on my car and keep the money?” The answer isn’t always straightforward, but it’s not usually a good idea. Here’s why.

How Do Hail Damage Insurance Claims Work?

When hailstones dent your car, you can file a hail damage insurance claim to help cover the repair cost. However, many people consider pocketing the insurance payout instead of fixing the hail damage on their car. Whether this is even an option depends on the answers to these two questions:

Who Owns the Car?

If you lease the vehicle or have an auto loan, it’s not up to you whether you fix your car or not. You may be obligated to make the repair to ensure the car’s value remains intact for the lender or dealership that leased you the car.

Where Does the Payment Go?

If you own your car outright, the insurance company may issue the check directly to you, allowing you to use it however you deem fit. But if your car is financed, the insurance company will likely issue the check to the lender or the repair shop.

Risks of Keeping the Money

While keeping the insurance money might seem appealing, there are several reasons why it’s not a good idea:

  • Insurance coverage issues: If you don’t fix the hail damage, your insurance company might drop your comprehensive coverage or refuse to pay out in the future since you never repaired the initial damage.
  • Decreased resale value: When you attempt to sell or trade in a hail-damaged car, buyers or dealers will deduct the repair cost from the car’s value, leaving you with less money.
  • Potential legal and financial consequences: If you’re involved in an accident later, unaddressed hail damage could complicate claims and assessments. Plus, some states have laws requiring you to repair significant damage.

Why Fixing Hail Damage is Important

Hail damage might seem purely cosmetic, but fixing it benefits you in several ways:

  • Retain value: Repairing problems with your car—whether cosmetic or functional—helps maintain its market value, a crucial factor if you plan to sell or trade it in soon.
  • Avoid further damage: Hail dents can lead to widespread rust if left untreated, an unsightly issue that’s much costlier to fix later.
  • Maintain insurance coverage: Following through with the hail damage claim you filed makes it easier to file other claims in the future.

Schedule Hail Damage Repair in Frisco, TX

While you might be tempted to keep the insurance money from a hail damage claim, it’s better to put it toward the intended purpose. Dent Squad USA would be happy to provide fast, cost-effective hail damage repair. We’ve been in business since 1994, helping customers in Frisco, Plano, McKinney, and Allen, TX, restore their cars to pristine condition. Our local, family-owned business provides excellent service and has won multiple awards for our work. Got a ding? We fix those things. Call us at 214-664-1027 to schedule hail damage repair today.

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