Volume 15, Issue 6- November/December 2013

WGR Reports
repair news

NWRA President Addresses Insurance Groups
The National Windshield Repair Association has been speaking out to the insurance community on behalf of its members. NWRA recently contacted several insurers concerning a number of issues that have recently developed, including a potential limit of three repairs per windshield, pre-inspection requirements prior to repair authorization and more.

Limit to Repairs Per Windshield
Specifically, the NWRA has been alerted to the fact that some insurers had put new policies in place that limit the number of repairs allowed per windshield to three.

“The Standards Development Committee of the Repair of Laminated Auto Glass Standard (ROLAGS)™ has been made aware of the policy of some automobile insurers which limits to three the number of repairs that are allowed on the windshield of an insured’s vehicle. … All of our experience, our review of other international standards and our own technical data indicated that the integrity of a repaired windshield with multiple damages will continue to meet the relevant auto glass safety standards,” says association president Richard Campfield.

Campfield says he asked insurance officials about the scientific rationale for the maximum repair limit.

“Are there test results to show that more than three repairs of any kind compromises the integrity of the windshield?” he asked. “If there is indeed a safety penalty from three or more repairs, we would certainly appreciate the opportunity to evaluate this testing and incorporate technical progress into ROLAGS™ as necessary or prudent.”

Pre-Inspection Requirements
In additional letters addressed to other insurance companies, Campfield says the NWRA questions the practices of requiring pre-inspection prior to authorizing a windshield repair.

“We are likewise troubled about the issue of potentially fraudulent windshield repair but we are concerned about the practice of compulsory windshield inspections,” he points out. “We have recently required that all our members agree to our Code of Practice, which included adherence to the ROLAGS™ Standard. The ROLAGS™ Standard clearly defines what is considered potentially repairable and what is not.”

Campfield says the NWRA realizes it’s an insurer’s decision as to how it manages auto glass claims, but he hopes that the two groups can open a dialog with the association to help ncrease the “successful windshield repair ratio.”

Massachusetts Auto Glass Regulation
While the NWRA is largely in favor a new regulation from the Massachusetts Division of Insurance that aims to “establish parameters for the referral of insureds to registered motor vehicle glass repair shops,” the group does have one exception with the language—the requirement to maintain a physical place of business with indoor facilities for windshield repair.

“The NWRA has been monitoring the implementation of Chapter 208 and while we applaud virtually all of the provisions of this legislation, we do have some concern over the requirement to maintain a physical place of business with indoor facilities for windshield repair,” Campfield explains.

“The successful windshield repair ratio in Massachusetts is much less than 50 percent,” he adds. “In fact, the vast majority of windshields are replaced in Massachusetts. We are concerned that the requirement that a windshield repair business be obligated to maintain a physical place of business with indoor facilities is an unnecessary burden for windshield repair, especially in light of the fact that the insurance industry and their third-party administrators promote and sell mobile service.”

Campfield went on to state that this requirement will limit the amount of windshield repairs and ultimately result in higher costs for the motoring public via higher insurance premiums.

“The NWRA realizes this is more likely a legislative issue,” Campfield says. “However, we would like to open a dialog with insurers to see if this is an initiative that is worth pursuing to reap the benefits of successful windshield repair for the motoring public in Massachusetts.”

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