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Pa. House Passes Motor Vehicle Physical Damage Appraiser Act

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Dec. 31, 2015—The Pennsylvania House of Representatives have passed House Bill 1638, which amends a 1972 law requiring that insurance appraisers are present for all automotive inspections. This bill would allow auto insurance appraisals to be done in a number of different ways, including through photography.

The bill still retains the customer’s right to choose the method of inspections. The bill states “an appraiser may not require the submission of photographs or videos in order to obtain an appraisal,” but now allows an option for virtual inspection.

"For five years, Snapsheet has been enabling a new choice for customers through virtual estimating technology. We have made the process easier for customers, insurance carriers and for body shops," said Brad Weisberg, Founder and CEO of Snapsheet, a provider of virtual auto claims settlement by photo. "The Pennsylvania House Bill 1638 is a huge step forward for consumers who prefer to opt-in for a self-service or virtual inspection."

House Bill 1638 would mean that consumers would have a choice of how an appraisal is handled. Customers who choose a virtual inspection will be free to schedule a repair at any shop of their choice.

The bill was introduced on Oct. 20 and sponsored by Rep. Mike Tobash (R-Dauphin County/Schuylkill County).

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