What the Bill does:
HB664 allows NH vehicle owners and their local independent collision repair shops to voluntarily choose to follow the repair procedures and recommendations of the auto manufacturer. If the consumer and repair shop follow those third-party expert recommendations, then the insurance company also needs to follow those expert recommendations and cover the vehicle. In addition, the bill provides a similar choice regarding the painting of vehicles where the car owner and body shop can choose to follow third-party independent guidelines for the paint and materials.
Why is this needed?
Decisions regarding safe repair of NH citizens’ vehicles following an accident should be made by NH citizens and local body shops; not out-of-state insurance bureaucrats. Some insurance companies refuse to cover repair procedures recommended by the manufacturer of the vehicle. For example, many times insurance companies won’t cover post-repair computer scans. This is like denying an x-ray after a doctor puts a cast on a broken arm. Today’s cars are so complex that it is foolish not to cover procedures recommended by the engineers that build the vehicle.
Do independent collision repair shops support HB664?
Yes. This bill was drafted and supported by NH independent collision repair shops through the NH Collision Repair Advisory Group (NHCRAG). These small shops were lead advocates during testimony and negotiation. The NHADA which represents over 60 NH independent shops also supports this bill. The insurance department is absolutely wrong that this will harm independent shops.
Can consumers and shops use all the same parts, tools and equipment as they use today including recycled or aftermarket parts?
Yes! Shops can use all the same parts, equipment and tools as they use today. The bill specifically states the parts choice law stays the same. Use of recycled, used, aftermarket, re-manufactured, and new parts will not vary from how they are treated currently. The bill was amended to resolve parts and tool concerns by the NH Recyclers Association, LKQ and Safelite Glass.
Which business groups agreed upon the compromise amendments?
Many parties worked to reach this compromise legislation including: The NH Recyclers Association, LKQ, NHADA, NH Collision Repair Advisory Group (NHCRAG), and Safelite Glass.
Who else supports HB664?
This bill has the support of Sanel Auto Parts and the Automotive Service Association (ASA), NHADA and NHCRAG. The ASA, SCRS (Society of Collision Repair Specialists), and AASP (Alliance of Automobile Service Providers) have formally endorsed following these repair procedures as the standard of care since at least 2011.
Isn’t this a bi-partisan bill?
Yes. Republicans and Democrats alike sponsored and voted for HB664. The House vote of 242-105 and the Senate unanimous voice vote prove the overwhelming bi-partisan support.
Hasn’t this been debated for two years now?
Yes. The House and Senate bipartisan study committee recommended multiple changes to the language in HB664. HB664 has been studied and debated for over two years.
What if a NH consumer or body shop doesn’t want to follow the repair procedures?That is OK. This bill allows the 1.3 million vehicles owners in NH that choice and local control. Right now, some insurance companies won’t cover.
What about the out-of-state insurance companies?
The independent and franchised repair shops spent hours negotiating with the out-of-state car insurance companies. Some changes were made, however, many of the demands by the insurance industry would have gutted the bill. For example, in the definition of manufacturers repair procedures, they wanted to exclude manufacturer’s “position statements, recommendations, advice, and suggestions”. If a manufacturer recommended using rivets instead of glue, the insurance company wouldn’t cover the repair. This bill is about safe car repairs.
What about my insurance policy?
In the 24 months this language was debated, the insurance lobbyists provided zero evidence that this would impact your policy costs. Zero. Isn’t it time that consumers got their accident repairs fully covered by their policy?
“Hundreds of independent shops like us support this bill. NH takes pride in making decisions locally and HB664 did just that.”
- Birch Street Collision Center (Derry)
- Prestige Auto Body (Manchester)
- R&J Auto Body (Rochester)
- Young’s Hot Rod (Pittsburg)
- Alexa Auto (Salem)
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