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BBB asks drivers to beware of scammers after car accident

The Better Business Bureau, which operates in all 50 states and Canada, recently issued tips for all drivers to follow after being in a car accident. The BBB has two regional offices for Michigan, one in Southfield and one in Grand Rapids.

Once the disbelief and anger have waned a bit and you've mentally conducted a head-to-toe checklist, the first call people usually make after being in a car accident is to 911. After that, the second call is probably to their insurance company. After that, it's a whirlwind of police officers, tow trucks, passersby, and other accident victims with three sides to every story.

If your vehicle is not drivable and must be towed, the BB recommends not allowing any unsolicited tow truck to transport your car. Double-check to make sure the name on the tow truck matches the name of the company you or your insurance agent called. If in doubt, call your insurance agent back. If the tow truck is not branded, ask the driver for identification and/or a business card. You then have to decide where to have to car towed; to a mechanic, body shop, or home.

In the days following the accident, while determining if and where to have your car fixed, make sure you talk with your friends and family, auto part store salesperson, insurance agent, or even your personal injury attorney for recommendations. Interview different mechanics and ask for their credentials or certifications. Ask if they've ever worked on the same make and model of your car before. You can check with your local Better Business Bureau to see if any complaints have been logged against any auto shops in your area. Most of all, do not pay for any auto repairs in full until all the work is complete.

Then, just recover at home and watch the unsolicited direct mail pieces show up in your mailbox from chiropractors.

Source: lenconnect.com, "BBB Watch: What to do after a car accident," June 27, 2012

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