What happens when car insurance won’t pay for crash repairs? This is one woman’s nightmare tale

CARTERSVILLE, Ga. — What do you do when the insurance company won’t pay up?

It could happen to any of us after an accident, especially if you are relying on the other driver’s insurance.

Angela Johnson, from Cartersville, reached out to Channel 2 consumer investigator Justin Gray after her car had been sitting at the body shop for more than a month.

The insurance company would not pay the money to the body shop for the repairs.

“The body shop has fixed your car, right?” Gray asked Johnson.

“They fix[ed] my car. My car has been fixed since Nov. 13. My car’s sitting in the body shop parking lot. They can’t give it back. He said he can’t release it,” Johnson said.

It was in September that another driver crashed into her wheel in a parking lot. Police cited the other driver and Johnson reached out to that other driver’s insurance company, Unique Insurance Company.

“I went home, and I looked it up and I saw the reviews and immediately I thought, ‘Oh, no. What am I in for?’” Johnson said.

Unique has only a 1-star rating with a 95% unfavorable rating on the website “Pissed Consumer.”


Johnson said she went back and forth with Unique for weeks trying to get repairs paid for before filing a complaint with the state insurance commissioner.

After that complaint, Unique did send a check for the repairs, but it was only a fraction of the actual costs.

“To take money and not to produce the service, there’s a name for that. And we do have laws against that,” Johnson said.

That’s when you can file a complaint with the Georgia Insurance Commissioner. Their office sent Gray a statement, saying:

“If we find that the company has violated a Georgia law, regulation or the policy contract, we work with the consumer and company towards a resolution. The commissioner retains the ability to fine a company for each violation, issue a market conduct exam, and in the most egregious scenarios, can ultimately stop a carrier from writing business in the state of Georgia.”

Johnson has also racked up more than $4,000 in rental car fees on top of the repair costs.

“I am maxing out my credit card. I went through this on Thanksgiving. I am now going through this on Christmas,” Johnson said.

But after Channel 2 Action News reached out to Unique and the insurance commissioner, Johnson got good news from Unique. The company agreed to pay the full repair and rental car costs.

She picked up the car from the body shop on Thursday.