The Collision Repair Association of California (CRA) said that it does not support litigation against State Farm in its year-end review of legislation and court decisions. However, the CRA did say it’s important to continue to file complaints against insurers with the Department of Insurance (DOI), though the association admitted it has seen little success from its own filings.
Regarding the potential lawsuit against State Farm spearheaded by California shop owner Gene Crozat, CRA Executive Director Allen Wood wrote that recent court decisions in favor of insurers prove that collision repairers must find a new approach to insurance companies in the courtroom and focus less on the interests of lone body shops.
“We are not opposed to litigation, but we are opposed to litigation that promotes individual interests and does not further the position of the industry as a whole,” Wood wrote. “With our insight into prior filings, we see no reason to continue to plow the same ground when the courts have made their position known. We are actively looking for alternatives or new arguments that may change the judiciary’s thinking.”
Wood also noted that CRA members continue to file complaints against insurers that commit unfair business practices or anti-steering code violations with the DOI, but the association has seen few results from the filings.
“The filing of complaints with the DOI has resulted in ongoing delay tactics and inaction on the part of the insurance commissioner’s office,” Wood wrote. “We support complaints being filed; however, when the regulatory agency cannot demonstrate any willingness to address the issues, the efforts seem futile. This is a battle CRA has fought for three years (and continues to fight) with no results from the DOI. The reason we continue to support the grueling process of filing complaints is to keep the issues in the forefront.”