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direct pay

can anyone tell me if you do a job for direct pay are you suppose to bill the insurance company for the w/s after the job is completed or can you a submit a bill for w/s only and then when job is complete bill out for labor, kit etc- thanks for your help

Re: direct pay

sorry, forgot to say the W/S are all OEM

Re: direct pay

You can't charge them for parts and labor prior to work being performed or completed. I have never heard of this!!!

Re: direct pay

thank-you I didn't think so, I was told to do it this way by the insurance agent it doesn't make any sense to me either. thanks again

Re: direct pay

I would agree with not charging for labor before it is performed, but I have customers daily that pay for parts and materials when they come in, but only later pay for the labor to install such parts.

Now, the reasons for this vary, but my question is, why is this a problem? If a customer comes in, pays for a part, it becomes their part, and they have a reciept in hand proving that they paid for it, and that we still have it in our possession awaiting delivery, pickup, or installation. Many times we bill out ordered parts upon our reciept of them if for no other reason to "remind" the customer (with the bill) that their parts are in. Many businesses make customers pay for ordered parts up front. We have considered it many times, but only enforce the "pay first, work second" on customers that have shown in the past that they have problems paying. I can't count how many fabricated items we have 'eaten' when the customer never comes back for the items they ordered, or had us fabricate and produce.

So, what's wrong with charging for parts that aren't installed yet, especially if you haven't performed the installation of them yet? If you were billing for parts AND labor on jobs that weren't performed, I could sure see the major problem there.

I do wish to hear more about why the agent told you to do this. What was the goal?

Re: direct pay

I really don't know what the goal was we have 5 w/s replacements set up for next week the agent called to see if we already had the oem w/s in our possesion which we do, she went on to say we should bill them now for the w/s and when the work is actually preformed bill for the labor etc.... I had never heard of this when I questioned her she said that is how they prefer to handle multiple oem replacements when the work is being done for one client. As far as why they prefer to do this is still not known, we are not going to do it, thinking we will have a problem getting paid for the installs.

Re: direct pay

the agent might be trying to help customer by not turning in one single large amount and do it in two so it might fly under radar and go unnoticed to corp (just a thought)

Re: direct pay

Well, it is quite interesting, isn't it?

I don't see the problem with billing the parts first when they arrive; think of it as a 'payment request upon reciept of parts' agreement with the customer.

I think you would/should have no problems billing the installation labor separately later. Collision shops do this daily with insurers, they call them supplements. It's also done daily in the construction side of the biz with flat glass, materials billed when they arrive less a small % retainage, labor later when materials are installed. If an explanation is asked for as to why the billing was done separately, answer truthfully. Your billing separately will reflect nothing done 'wrong' on your part that I can think of, from what you've described: Parts arrived 06/11/06, you invoiced them out. Parts installed 06/30/06, 07/02/06, 07/12/06, ect ect, you invoiced out the labor.

I see no issues with billing all parts when they arrived, and installing them later as the customer allows you access to the different vehicles as they become available. Perhaps the vehicles are being used daily, and they only want to rotate one out of service at a time long enough for you to do the installations, at their convenience?

I see nothing wrong with that on your part, with what you've info you've given, but again, 'could' see an issue with billing out everything before any work is done. Someone might twist that into an insurance fraud issue. Remember the news articles about the guys billing for work that was never done, nor intended to be?

Seems to me if the customer signs a work order, outlining up front billing for all, that potential implication of impropriety could be avoided too, but I think this level of caution is likely unnecessary unless the agent and the claimant are playing some funny claims games. However if something funny is going on, your work orders and invoices, and the parts sitting there waiting to be installed, should protect you from being dragged into anything.

Never hurts to be careful, I suppose.

Re: direct pay

Jesus Christ if thats not fraud i do not know what is, billing for a job before its completed??? SHADY!

Re: direct pay

ACTUALLY, JESUS HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH THIS! But as far as residential glass work and cash customers, what is wrong with writing the estimate or invoice to do work, and have the customer put 1/2 down,(usually the cost of materials), and bal on completion of work which is usually the labor end. happens all the time. I totally agree with Mark1 on this.

Re: direct pay

There's no other way to do it in flat glass, customer always pays half up front and balance upon completion of work. Otherwise I'd say at least 1 out of every 5 would have some excuse for why they just can't do it right now because ya-da-ya-da-ya-da happened between the time you ordered their glass and it came in. It happens in autoglass all the time, private pays will order a glasspart for installation and the next day when AG calls for directions and to set appointment you get, well my son's altenator went out on his car and I've just got to get that done first...can I call and reschedule next week. Meanwhile you've paid $2.50 delivery charge, and could be looking at restocking fee as well. We've considered getting deposits on private pay AG's as well.

Re: direct pay

It turns out to be what GSB said they wanted to invoice for parts first and labor second because it is such a big claim, we told them we were'nt comfortable with it and we are billing everything at once, the agent was okay with it and said that this was thier procedure on large claims but billing at once was okay too. Still felt strange to me, she said this is done all the time with oem replacements?

Re: direct pay

In these situations we just show the pre-payment as a deposit and be done with it. Doesn't help on the claim side however, and the actual invoice will still show the large invoce amount.

Funny thing is, I have yet to meet any AGENT that knows anything about auto glass before CE classes, let alone that OEM glass costs more, etc. What insurance company was this with? They have some smart agents I tell ya.

Re: direct pay

Something else just popped into my mind after reading this string....I hadn't thought of it earlier. I had to go back and pull this out of the database; the software won't allow a payment to a customer account without a 'work order' so it only took a minute to pull the info up.

I have seven customers so far this year that have either made payments to me before the work was done as they had the money, a little at a time because they admittedly didn't have the discipline to save it themselves and pay me when the work was done, and three of the seven paid me for parts and labor when ordering because that's how they like to do business.

It does not matter if this is auto or flat purchases. We generated a work order, let them pay as they wished, and completed the work when requested. All was outlined on the work order, and finally the invoice.

How is this fraud in any way?

I just can't see the issue unless an insurer is involved and brings up the insurance fraud question, which is quickly squashed with your work order showing the intended pre-payments, and post payments/balance-in-full completion/fulfillment of the contract agreement between you and the customer. (NOT the insurer, it's none of their business how the customer and I negotiated a payment structure for services rendered.)

So again, if you're worried, leave it as a work order until you complete the work, THEN change it to an invoice. That should keep all parties happy.


Re: direct pay

CCC the agent was working with the claims adjuster whom I spoke to myself and new everything about OEM's the adjuster said that nobody has ever questioned this method of payment- thanks everyone for your help

Re: direct pay

Just had another "pre-pay" customer.

Older truck, his work truck. He's been driving with a broken WS for three years.

He wanted to pay now, and get the WS replaced in ten days, when he's going to be off work and not needing the truck.

We generated a work order, payment credited there.

Work will be done on the appointment date, unless he changes it.

Re: direct pay

Well I feel like a blonde!!! After re-reading your original post I must apologize. I thought you were talking about billing for the entire job, labor and parts! It is always easier to track aging if it's on one invoice for each job though.
Mark you are completely right with everything you have said.
We too have accepted deposits from our customers. We require a deposit on special order parts for cash customers. It's a must as there are parts that are not returnable.

Re: direct pay

Well, that customer that came in early this AM came back in this afternoon, because his schedule had changed. We had a cancellation, so we brought him in and changed his shield. We did include parts, labor, and tax on the work order we generated this AM. Switched to an invoice upon completion this afternoon. He's thrilled.

I'm still waiting for Larry to explain how what I did is fraud, or shady.

I don't get it.

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