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Car insurance: this gift from windshield repairmen that you actually pay for later

Some brands specializing in windshield repair do not hesitate to multiply commercial operations using free smartphones or electric scooters. But is it really?

Free wiper replacement, free electric window washer or even, more surprisingly: a free games console. Here, among other things, are the many gifts promised to motorists by certain specialist brands for repairing their windscreen.

If, since the Hamon law of 2014, motorists are free to turn to the repairer of their choice in the event of an accident, some specialists do not hesitate to attract customers by promising them a small bonus in the form of a gift.

However, these tempting commercial offers would not be so interesting if we are to believe an article published on Friday, November 18 in Le Parisien. According to the daily, the insurance companies point to these brands and accuse them of making them foot the bill for these gifts. Result: they would in turn pass this cost on to the insurance premium and thus to the motorist.

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Motorists, first punished

“The intention of the legislator has been distorted by some, the association of the French insurance sector is indignant at Le Parisien. The repairer presents the invoice to the insurer and the latter is obliged to pay”, even if the work is carried out by a non-approved company to prices that exceed very high.

For a Citroën C4, the price to replace a windshield varies on average from 1,000 to 1,630 euros, depending on the brand. These inexplicable differences lead insurance companies to believe that repairers are charging them for the gifts offered.

According to Franck Le Vallois, CEO of France Assureurs, this increase in costs imposed by repairers does not really penalize insurers on the front line. Because “in the end, the gifts offered to entice customers and the management of the excess are paid for by the community of policyholders. Concretely, these potential excesses are offset by premium increases.

Note that these premium increases should continue into 2023. According to data from the firm Facts & Figures (F&F), current auto insurance contracts should rise again by 3 to 5% next year.

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