You are here:

Auto Insurance Claims/Bad body work to car - what's my recourse?


Hi, Justin. I was recently rear-ended and when repairing my car, the body shop made me aware of some previous sub-par body work done to my car 5 years ago in which the quarter panel had to be replaced. As a result of the quarter panel not being replaced exactly right, they say, the new repair work which involved replacing my bumper cannot be done correctly - meaning the seams of where the bumper meets the quarter panel do not line up and things are noticeably not right. To make matters more complicated I have a different insurance company now than I did when the quarter panel work was done - do I have any recourse with anyone at this point - the body shop which was the Audi dealer or the insurance company? Thanks very much. Anne

In California, the statute of limitation on a contract (repair agreement) is 4 years.  That means you have four years to sue if you have damages, and if you don't sue in time, you forfeit your right to sue later.  If it has been more than 4 years since the shoddy workmanship, then it seems you have waited too long to take action.  Now, since the shoddyness was hidden and not discovered till recently, there could be some help there, but you need an attorney to tackle that issue.

At this point, I am sad to say that you are in a position with no good recourse.

If you need to discuss further, information is always free at Petty Details, LLC.

I hope this helps.

Auto Insurance Claims

All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


Justin Petty


Challenge me! I promise that I will provide you with the most honest answer I can muster, and I will base it on nearly 20 years of complex claims experience. My strength is shooting it straight and seeing through BS. I do not bluff and I can tell when somebody is. I've handled claims in almost every State in the U.S. and adjusted claims and consulted attorneys and CEO's on recovery and special claims tactics for over a decade. I am the founder and President of Petty Details, LLC. We provide the highest quality claim services to insurance companies, attorneys and individuals all exactly in the same way, by paying attention to the details and doing the right thing.


Nearly 20 years of combined claim company management, litigation, all lines adjusting, claim auditing, damage assessment, subrogation, small claims, tort recovery, collection, skip-tracing, tactical investigations, and contribution claim recovery experience across the United States of America.

NASP (National Association of Subrogation Professionals) (Auto Insurance Expert) Diminished Value Appraisers Group (LinkedIn)

10 years experience in writing and developing technical claims correspondence for litigation and unique scenarios at insurance companies and as a consultant to attorneys assisting with legal briefs and research. 42 published articles relating to auto insurance and claims. Self Published e-books entitled "How Much is My Injury Worth" and "Diminished Value - How Do I Get Paid?".

School of hard knocks, 3 years college, NO DEGREE, years of real world experience running a claims service company and adjusting claims for carriers. Speaks English and Spanish, Limited Portuguese & Italian.

Awards and Honors
Platinum Author ( All Lines Adjuster (TX, 1998 - 2008) TX Public Adjuster (2009 - 2011)

Past/Present Clients
State Farm Insurance, Endeavor GA, MileMeter Ins., American Recreational Markets, Gainsco Ins. Co., Safeway Ins., Home State County Mutual Insurance, Old American County Mutual Insurance, FCCI, Farm Bureau, Liberty Mutual, and Pronto General Agency, LTD just to name a few! On top of insurance companies and attorneys, I have personally helped thousands of accident victims with the difficult and stressful process of navigating their claim to a successful resolution.

©2017 All rights reserved.