Can a body-shop cash a check that is made to me and my bank

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 11, 2009 8:34 pm   Post subject: Can a body-shop cash a check that is made to me and my bank  

a claim check was made to me and my lien-holder. i have mailed the check to my lien-holder with the body-shop invoice as requested by them. my question now is how is the body going cash that check once they will receive it??

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 11, 2009 10:30 pm   Post subject:   

They will have you come in and sign it. I'm betting your lein holder won't endorse it with just a final bill or invoice though. You, (and the shop) would've been much better off to have the adjuster stop pay on that draft and reissue one to you and the shop only.


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 11, 2009 10:34 pm   Post subject:   

If the check was made payable to you and the lien holder the check would not be cashed by the body shop... as they are not listed on the check. Your lien holder will verify that the repairs have been made to the vehicle and endorse the check, then mail it back to you. You will then need to pay the shop.

Yes, it would have been easier if the adjuster put your name and the body shop on the check rather then the lien holder.

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 12, 2009 3:42 pm   Post subject:   

Check the repair order you signed or the completion of repairs documentation. You may have signed a power of attorney for the purposes of the shop endorsing a check made payable to you and the lienholder, if the shop released the vehicle to you before receiving payment.

I know my repair contract drawn by a contract attorney has it, though I have never used it. I have always found it easier to just bill the consumer and collect payment from them. Their contract of insurance which protects the lienholder does not apply to the repairer nor is the shop's problem. Or as both T and Lori mentioned, just have the check re-issued to the shop and vehicle owner and Fedex'd overnite so the vehicle can be released.

Many shopowners as myself, will not release the vehicle until payment is made and most insurers will make overnite payment even though they may balk at it. I have no agreements with the insurer and I do not accept their promise to pay. The claim that the check is in the mail is usually a ploy to get the shop to release the vehicle in hopes the insurer will pay promptly. Many insurance payments are made out of one office half way accross the country and some adjusters do not write the payment checks. Payment to the shop could take as long as a month with some companies if the shop does not assert it's legal rights for payment of services rendered.

Once the vehicle is out of the possession of the shop they can not hold it as a lien for guarantee of payment by the vehicle owner or their insurer. Once it is released and the shop does not receive payment, it then becomes a civil matter between the vehicle owner and the shop. The shop has no legal right to negotiate for the payment of a loss on behalf of the vehicle owner as they are not a party to the contract of policy of insurance. Once the car is out the door with no payment, the only option for the shop is to sue the vehicle owner for payment and get a judgement if the insurer does not pay or the lienholder does not make payment to the shop.

It's been my experience as a shop owner, that insurers make prompter payment when the vehicle owner has signed a contract of repairs that makes them responsible for storage if payment is not made two days after repairs or the vehicle is picked up. This may sound harsh as a business owner, but the shop has used it's funds for payment of parts, services, and taxes with expectations that payment will be made upon completion of the repairs. Name another business that allows use of their funds for the benefit of others and lets the security of payment roll out the door all on the non legal promise of payment by a party that is not part of the contract of repairs and the shop is not a party to the contract of indemnificaion by an insurer. You can not fault the shop for protecting it's interest when the vehicle owner (possibly unknowingly) uses a lienholder that is 2000 miles from you or the shop and cannot physically inspect the car.

Most state laws or statutes forbid anyone that is not an attorney, a party to the contract of insurance, nor a public adjuster to negotiate for the payment of indemnification (first party payment on a claim) on behalf of themselves and another party to the contract; nor may they legally represent a third party claimant for payment due by the at fault party for payment of damages or a loss due to the negligence of the first party insurer's policy holder.


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