By Bill McDonough, Editor, Body Language
The State of Nevada Division of Insurance recently sent a bulletin to insurance companies to remind them about the state’s requirement that claimants for vehicle damage must be notified – in writing – if a collision repair estimate is prepared using aftermarket parts. In addition, insurers must obtain written consent from vehicle owners if non-OEM parts are to be used in the repair. You can read the full text of the bulletin here: Nevada Bulletin 16-005
Body Language contacted the Nevada Division of Insurance to inquire why such a bulletin was issued, and who received it. Responding on behalf of the Commissioner of Insurance, Rajat Jain, Chief Insurance Examiner, said that the bulletin “was issued to the insurance industry who are licensees of the Division of Insurance.” Jain also said the Division of Insurance was collaborating with the Department of Motor Vehicles (which licenses repair shops in Nevada), who would share it with repair shops.
When asked what prompted a “reminder” bulletin, and whether it was circulated after the Division of Insurance received consumer complaints, Jain replied, “From time to time, the Division issues Bulletins on a variety of topics to provide clarification/guidance, or serve as a reminder, to the insurance industry. I am not aware of any specific complaints on this topic that prompted the Bulletin.”
Finally, addressing the legal requirement that non-OEM parts be warranted by the manufacturer to be of “like kind and quality,” we asked by what standards the state judged aftermarket parts. Jain replied,
“While I cannot speak for other State of Nevada agencies, from insurance claims settlement perspective, it is my understanding that the insurance industry typically considers parts that are certified to be ‘like kind and quality’ by a recognized qualified organization (such as CAPA or LKQ) as an acceptable standard.” [EDITOR’S NOTE: While LKQ distributed aftermarket parts, they are not a certification agency.]
To me it seems like the State of Nevada is going out of its way to single out aftermarket parts, particularly if the bulletin was not issued in response to any consumer complaints.