Make sure the car gets measured. Refuse to pay for any aftermarket, used or reconditioned parts.
Remember you are 100% in control of the repair process, the insurance company's only job is to covert the repair cost
Your insurance company is not obligated to be honest with you.
I do this professionally and I'm part of a large collision repair network. The hardest part of all of this will be finding a competent shop. Most shops are barely qualified to fix a riding lawnmower. If you want to give me your location, I will check if there is a decent shop in your area.
You will also want a PRI (post repair inspection) done.
I'm definitely new to all of this. The whole "OEM parts" issue was something that I thought of right away though. On the phone, they ensured me that aftermarket parts wouldn't be used, but then when I look up the State Farm policy, I see this:
The way that it's worded makes it sound like they can use non-OEM parts for bumper components, sheet metal, etc. But then at one point it says "The final choice as to which parts will actually be used in repairs rests with you, the vehicle owner."
So I'm honestly completely confused here. After doing more research online, it made it sound like that if I insisted on OEM parts, that I would have to pay the difference between the non-OEM parts and OEM parts.
Normally, if my car was older and had a lot of miles, I wouldn't care so much, but this car has 6k miles on it. I think it's kind of important that OEM parts be used to retain the value of the car.
As far as what shop to use, I honestly just reviewed the Google reviews and picked one. I have no way of knowing other than the posted reviews. My area code is 19390. If you have some known-good shop that is close, I'd appreciate that (I can always change the shop I picked). Planned on dropping the car off this morning though, so I don't have much time. I went with a local Abra shop, again - just based off of reviews (actually, I think it's really "Keenan Auto Body - an Abra Company"). However, State Farm does provide a lifetime warranty on the repair if it's done at a shop that they have a contract with (which I think is important).
So yes - please - any hints, tricks or advice anyone can give, I'd apprecaite it. I'm pretty "anal" about my cars and I want to make sure it's done right - but at the same time, body work is one of the things that I know least about...
Thank you very much!
EDIT: Who would do a PRI? Is that just some other body shop, the dealer or someone else? Not familair with that.
EDIT2: Never mind - I did some research and have found places that do it. It seems that most of them do it at no cost too (I guess they assume you'll get the issues "fixed" there)..