Did you know that the insurer is not under a duty to repair your vehicle with new parts? The obligation of the insurer is to place you in the position you were before the road crash and can therefore not be forced to use new parts during the repair!
Decision by the Ombudsman on repair of vehicle using second-hand parts
Subject to certain Limitations, using second hand parts to repair a vehicle is acceptable as Mr. B. (the insured) discovered when Lodging a complaint with the Ombudsman. Mr. B. was not satisfied with repair work done to his vehicle by the repairer appointed by his insurer. In particular, he was unhappy as the airbag warning Light on the dashboard of his vehicle remained on. On further investigation into the
In particular, he was unhappy as the airbag warning Light on the dashboard of his vehicle remained on. On further investigation into the matter he discovered that the repairer had utilised second-hand parts to repair the vehicle.
The insurer argued that it was entitled to use second-hand parts as it was essentially swapping “Like for Like”. In order to resolve the airbag warning Light issue, the insurer indicated that an agent of the vehicle manufacturer needed to reset the airbag system for which they offered to pay.
OMBUDSMAN’S VIEWS AND FINDINGS:
Using Second-Hand Parts:
The Ombudsman indicated that the parts replaced on the vehicle were also second-hand at the time of Loss although they may have been new when the insured purchased the vehicle. Bearing in mind that the duty of the insurer is to place the insured in as close a position as possible after the accident as before, it was agreed that new parts did not have to be used to repair the vehicle. If new parts were used, Mr. B. in this
If new parts were used, Mr. B. in this instance, would have been placed in a better position than before, as betterment would have occurred for which he would have had to pay. As Long as the parts were of a quality at Least as good as the parts which had to be replaced, the Ombudsman could not fault the actions of the insurer.
Resetting of Airbag System
The Ombudsman was also satisfied with the arrangement made regarding the airbag system of the vehicle. Mr. B. was advised to take his vehicle to an agent of the manufacturer to have the airbag system reset and the insurer was instructed to contact Mr. B. to make arrangements for the payment towards the reset of the airbag system.