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Tesla Insurance - What’s the process?

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Sad to say, but the day has come; my car was rear ended. I was stopped behind some cars at a red light and the other car didn’t see that we all were stopped. She realized and swerved too late causing damage to the rear, passenger corner of my car. Everyone’s alright, her airbag deployed. I’m just dealing with some stiffness/soreness from the accident. Car was disabled and towed to a tow yard from a place Irvine PD recommended.

Filed a claim during the accident and haven’t had any updates from Tesla Insurance other than the original claim automated message. I tried calling the adjuster but it went straight to voicemail. I definitely will need a rental but the only way to request it was via email.

Has anyone dealt with a Tesla Insurance claim where the other party is at fault? I would’ve gone thru the other party’s insurance but just felt having Tesla go after them would streamline the process for me.

I guess the final question is the one we all hate: is it totaled?
 

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It’s absolutely horrible experience.

The claims adjuster for a previous claim on a windshield replacement would never pick up the phone and never return voicemails. Everything was done by email or text with at least 24-48 hours delay for every response. Waiting on hold for 2+ hours for a general customer service does no good as they will just tell you to talk to an adjuster. Yes, if I could actually talk to one!

The cheaper rates are just not worth the time and frustration to go with Tesla insurance. It’s almost like a mirror copy of my experiences with Tesla service.
 
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Just as a future data point if someone runs into the same predicament as me. My Model 3 was totaled after estimated $36k in repairs.

Day 1: After filing the claim in-app at the scene, Irvine PD towed the vehicle to a tow yard they contract with.
Day 3: Adjuster reached out and asked about the accident. They set up a Tesla rental through Hertz and had me go to the tow yard to sign a release so they could tow the car to a body shop of my choosing. Originally chose Tesla Aliso Viejo Collision Center but they messaged me in-app claiming that the damages were too extensive and I could either have the car sent to another Tesla Collision Center +/- 50 miles away or a Tesla-certified center. I chose the latter.
Day 4: They towed the car to the bodyshop.
Day 9: Body shop tears the car apart and comes back with an estimate of $36k in damages. They send to Tesla recommending the vehicle be written off as a total loss.
Day 10: I reach out to the body shop to see if they have updates and find that Tesla Insurance informed them the vehicle was totaled. Radio silence from Tesla still... I have no idea what's going on.
Day 11: A third party Insurance Auto Auction (IAA) reaches out to me and asks me to release the vehicle to them. They could not confirm nor deny if the vehicle has been totaled and told me to reach out to my adjuster. I reach out over emails/voicemails/texts threatening not to sign the release until someone communicates what is happening.
Day 14: Adjuster (FINALLY) tells me that the car is totaled. Asks me to sign the release form at the body shop. My loss is being transferred to the total loss department and the adjuster will reach out shortly.
Day 17: Total loss adjuster tells me the car is totaled and sends me a settlement letter (surprisingly competitive with used Tesla inventory pricing) and has IAA communicate with me to handle the rest (e-signing forms). Adjuster also states that I have 72 hrs left in the rental but would extend it until day 23. Sends me a settlement letter and has IAA communicate with me to handle the rest (e-signing forms). At this point, I panic as I need another car to get around. Ordered an inventory Model Y.
Day 22: I returned the rental a day early as I will have my new Model Y the following day. Tesla Insurance still has not paid my lender or me yet- I figured I'd rather start payments on a new car than pay $45/day in a rental car.

Moral of the story, Tesla Insurance does not communicate. Their prices are fantastic; small claims that do not leave you stranded are fine (I've had a windshield + glass roof replacement pretty quickly). But, if you're ever in an accident that leaves your car disabled, you will be extremely stressed out.
 
Just as a future data point if someone runs into the same predicament as me. My Model 3 was totaled after estimated $36k in repairs.

Day 1: After filing the claim in-app at the scene, Irvine PD towed the vehicle to a tow yard they contract with.
Day 3: Adjuster reached out and asked about the accident. They set up a Tesla rental through Hertz and had me go to the tow yard to sign a release so they could tow the car to a body shop of my choosing. Originally chose Tesla Aliso Viejo Collision Center but they messaged me in-app claiming that the damages were too extensive and I could either have the car sent to another Tesla Collision Center +/- 50 miles away or a Tesla-certified center. I chose the latter.
Day 4: They towed the car to the bodyshop.
Day 9: Body shop tears the car apart and comes back with an estimate of $36k in damages. They send to Tesla recommending the vehicle be written off as a total loss.
Day 10: I reach out to the body shop to see if they have updates and find that Tesla Insurance informed them the vehicle was totaled. Radio silence from Tesla still... I have no idea what's going on.
Day 11: A third party Insurance Auto Auction (IAA) reaches out to me and asks me to release the vehicle to them. They could not confirm nor deny if the vehicle has been totaled and told me to reach out to my adjuster. I reach out over emails/voicemails/texts threatening not to sign the release until someone communicates what is happening.
Day 14: Adjuster (FINALLY) tells me that the car is totaled. Asks me to sign the release form at the body shop. My loss is being transferred to the total loss department and the adjuster will reach out shortly.
Day 17: Total loss adjuster tells me the car is totaled and sends me a settlement letter (surprisingly competitive with used Tesla inventory pricing) and has IAA communicate with me to handle the rest (e-signing forms). Adjuster also states that I have 72 hrs left in the rental but would extend it until day 23. Sends me a settlement letter and has IAA communicate with me to handle the rest (e-signing forms). At this point, I panic as I need another car to get around. Ordered an inventory Model Y.
Day 22: I returned the rental a day early as I will have my new Model Y the following day. Tesla Insurance still has not paid my lender or me yet- I figured I'd rather start payments on a new car than pay $45/day in a rental car.

Moral of the story, Tesla Insurance does not communicate. Their prices are fantastic; small claims that do not leave you stranded are fine (I've had a windshield + glass roof replacement pretty quickly). But, if you're ever in an accident that leaves your car disabled, you will be extremely stressed out.
FYI, this is with all insurance companies. It’s just plain stressful to have an accident. Delays all around.
 
Not sure I would agree on that, USAA was amazing and transparent with my accident/ repair
I am a USAA member and insurance customer. My Land Rover was in a severe accident in 2022 and I had a poor experience with them unfortunately. In my upstate NY service area, they contract out the insurance claims to a 3rd party called Alacrity but all communications go through USAA so you think you are dealing with USAA directly. It was terribly slow & the individual who pulled comps to give me a value for my totaled Land Rover used comps for a different smaller “sport” model. Had to take it up to a 2nd level supervisor at USAA to step in and pull correct market data for values. I was unimpressed and it’s a distinct departure from my previous experiences with USAA years ago when they were smaller and handled almost all things in house.
 
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The problem with insurance companies is that they aren't consistent statewide. In one area you can have a great customer experience which helps lower the stress of having an accident and in other areas they add to the stress.
 
My experience with Tesla insurance has been great. We have a Tesla collision center here. When I filed the claim (deeply scraped the rear door, rocker, and quarter panel) in the first week of August and selected the Tesla collision center, it was scheduled for late October. I tried to call another independent shop, but they are also booked till mid-October. To my surprise, the week after Tesla rescheduled my appointment to late August. I asked through the app about the process and was promptly replied. The adjuster's initial response stated clearly the best way to communicate is through email or text during business hours and expect 24-48 hours for a reply. All of my questions/requests are handled/answered within a day. I never have to call her.

The Tesla collision center is even better, they sent an estimate a few days before the appointment, and I forwarded it to the adjuster, she told me my deductible and set up the rentals, the app later showed a lowered estimate, but I didn't bother to ask since I know it will be different once they opened up the damage. Once I dropped off the car, they gave me an update every Tuesday and Thursday through the app. The manager also gave me his cell number, and he responded to text messages almost immediately, his initial guesstimate is 20-25 business days to finish the job but he cautioned about parts availability for model S. I got my car back after 25 business days (5 weeks) exactly, there are the usual parts delay, wrong parts from Tesla.

I do have a minor pick, the rental was set up fast in the beginning, but I returned it after 10 days due to going out of town and don't want to waste the 30-day limit since who knows when the car will be ready. The second set up is problematic, the adjuster says there is a new process, just email a special email address and they will set it up for me, I sent a request on a Friday, hoping to get it set up before next Tuesday pick up, but I never got a reply, I ended up paying it myself, the good thing is the next day, my car is ready. I submitted the receipt to the adjuster, and she said she forwarded the receipt to the billing department.

As usual, YMMV, my repairs are considered minor, waiting for parts took a majority of the time, and I know calling them will be a waste of time and frustrations. One nice thing - it is true that with Tesla insurance and Tesla collision center, car parts have 50% off (shop supplies are not).
 
It’s absolutely horrible experience.

The claims adjuster for a previous claim on a windshield replacement would never pick up the phone and never return voicemails. Everything was done by email or text with at least 24-48 hours delay for every response. Waiting on hold for 2+ hours for a general customer service does no good as they will just tell you to talk to an adjuster. Yes, if I could actually talk to one!

The cheaper rates are just not worth the time and frustration to go with Tesla insurance. It’s almost like a mirror copy of my experiences with Tesla service.
The claim at MASTER THREAD: Tesla Insurance Services in California sure didn't age well in light of your issues and problems like these: Tesla Insurance Claim Check Bounced and Have Tesla insurance, just got DMV letter "Intent to Suspend" for lack of insurance.