USAA May Now Require Windshield Inspections Prior to Authorizing Work in Five Different States
January 5, 2011

USAA has announced that it may now require inspections of windshields involved in glass claims prior to authorizing work on the vehicle.

According to company spokesperson Rebecca Hirsch, inspections began in December and are now taking place in five states. The inspections are conducted by representatives of Safelite Solutions, which administers the company's glass claims program.

"Basically we started this program because we received feedback from our members that some of them felt like they were coerced or pressured to make glass claims when in reality there may not have been any damage to their glass," says Hirsch. " … We enacted this to protect our members from any fraudulent activity."

Currently, the program is in the pilot stages, she says.

"We're going to keep looking at it," says Hirsch. "We've already heard from a couple members that they did not have to submit a claim after the inspection process because there was no damage."

Hirsch was unable to advise of the specific states in which the program is taking place.™/AGRR magazine has heard from at least one reader in Florida who received the notification.

"We're going to see how effective it is and then perhaps roll it out to the rest of the country," adds Hirsch.

While Safelite Solutions officials are conducting the inspections, Hirsch advised that consumer choice is valued at the company.

"We do contract through Safelite, but again members are free to choose whichever auto glass shop provider they would like to get the work done," she adds.

USAA is not the first company to enact such a program. GEICO made a similar announcement last January and American Family also has been reported to require inspections prior to work authorization.

Are you seeing other insurers employing this practice? Please e-mail

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