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Small panel beaters being ‘squeezed out’ by big insurance companies

Independent panel beaters say car insurance companies are trying to squeeze them out of the industry.

3AW Drive host Tom Elliott wrote in the Herald Sun recently about a poor experience his wife had with one business, allocated by their car insurance company.

He said he was inundated with emails from small panel beaters.

Panel beater of 40 years George Cassar said he believed some were in danger of cutting corners when repairing cars.

‘(The insurance companies) are trying to eliminate the small repair shop and they are doing that by telling you you have no choice in the repairer you choose,’ he said.

‘No panel shop is perfect, whether it be mine or anyone else’s.

‘Do I have comebacks? Of course I do. But they do it at such a cheap rate, the only way they are going to make a profit is to turn over 80-100 cars a week.’

One caller said he believed independent panel beaters would soon be a thing of the past.

LISTEN: Panel beater of 40 years on 3AW Drive