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    Protect Your Shop From the Threat of Ransomware

    Printed in Autobody News With an alarming increase of ransomware attacks plaguing the collision repair industry, cybersecurity has become an important topic for shop owners to educate themselves on for the safety of their businesses. A type of cybersecurity risk, ransomware attacks are when someone seizes control of an organization’s computer system or digital information, agreeing to release it only after a ransom has been paid. Ransomware is typically spread through phishing emails with malicious attachments or by visiting an infected website, but shops have also been hacked through open ports. After infecting the victim’s system, the ransomware virus encrypts every data file it finds and displays a demand for…

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    2015 Sherwin-Williams v. JB Collision Receives Court Attention in 2019

    Printed in Autobody News Earlier this year, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that evidence existed supporting the $2.88 million verdict awarded to JB Collision in the shop’s lawsuit against Sherwin-Williams. Originally heard in 2015, the litigation’s jury awarded $3.25 million to the shop, but after the trial, the Court partially granted Sherwin-William’s motion to reduce JB Collision’s damages to $634,357.07. In response to an appeal filed by JB Collision and JJT owner John Tyczki, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that U. S. Southern District Chief Judge Larry Burns erred in his 2016 decision. After Sherwin-Williams v. JB Collision came before the appeals court on April 25, 2019, three judges unanimously agreed that the 2015…

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    B2B Automotive Provides Industry-Specific Services to Collision Shops

    Printed in Autobody News Marketing is a vital component to the success of any business, but because different industries have a variety of advertising needs, an agency that truly understands the best interests of your company may be able to provide a leg up on the competition. Representing the fourth generation in her family to dedicate a career to the automotive industry, Michelle Nelson founded B2B Automotive, a full-service marketing agency that specializes in serving the collision repair industry. Nelson stated, “B2B does pretty much anything the shop needs from managing I-CAR and OEM assessments and securing DRP relationships to designing websites and managing social media. B2B Automotive has the tools and skills…

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    CREF Still Accepting Entries for September’s Mentor-Mentee Challenge

    Printed in Autobody News The Collision Repair Education Foundation (CREF) is seeking additional teams to compete in its inaugural Top Tech Mentor/Mentee Competition being held on Saturday, Sept. 28 at Ranken Technical College in St. Louis. Currently, the competition consists of teams from large national MSOs, including Caliber, Gerber and Service King, but CREF “hopes to really diversify that,” says Christen Battaglia, director of strategic partnerships for CREF. “The only requirements are that the mentee has to be at least 18 years old and has to be currently enrolled in a technical program or have attended one within the past two years,” Battaglia adds. Shelly Jones of Performance Sales Solutions is heading up the event’s volunteer committee, and she shares,…

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    Texas Watch Requests TDI’s Public Records on “Prevailing Rate”

    Printed in Autobody News On July 17, Texas Watch, a non-profit consumer advocacy organization, contacted the Texas Department of Insurance (TDI), asking for copies of all public documents and information related to “prevailing rate” policy language. When asked why the advocacy group got involved in this topic, Texas Watch Executive Director Ware Wendell explained, “Prevailing rate is really, at base, a safety issue. If repair professionals can’t get paid enough to do the job the right way, consumers ultimately are the ones who suffer. They are under indemnified, their vehicles are devalued, and their lives are endangered. Insurers have been cherry-picking rates and forcing policy language on us that only benefits them. That…

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    St. Louis I-CAR Committee Prepares for Upcoming Job Fair

    Printed in Autobody News On July 11, the St. Louis I-CAR Committee gathered to discuss the group’s goals and their upcoming job fair. According to Committee Chair Shelly Jones, “Regarding the goals, we are over halfway there. With upcoming events planned, we anticipate reaching Gold Status again this year.” Gene Slattery, committee education coordinator, shared information about the upcoming job fair with the group. The Gateway Automotive and Collision Job Fair is scheduled for Friday, Sept. 27, from 8 a.m. until 2 p.m. at Gateway Motorsport Park in Madison, IL. The St. Louis I-CAR Committee anticipates the attendance of 750 automotive and collision repair high school and college students; however, due…

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    Femcanic Garage Podcast Highlights Women and Girls in the Automotive and Collision Repair Industry

    Printed in Autobody News Although it’s 2019 and many people will claim that gender equality has been achieved, the fact remains that society identifies distinct differences between females and males. Yet, the reality is that many expectations for the “softer sex” are a construct that doesn’t quite jive with reality. This is evidenced in the automotive and collision repair industry by the constantly increasing membership levels of women-focused organizations, such as the Women’s Industry Network (WIN) and Women in Automotive (WIA), showing just how many women are actively involved in this unconventional career field. Earlier this year, Jayme Blasiman decided that these women should be highlighted so their contributions and impact to…

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    ABAT Excitedly Preparing for 2019 Texas Auto Body Trade Show

    Printed in Autobody News On Sept. 20 and 21, the Auto Body Association of Texas(ABAT) will host its 2019 Texas Auto Body Trade Show at the Will Rogers Memorial Center in Fort Worth, Texas. According to ABAT President Burl Richards, “After making headway in defending consumer safety during the latest legislative session, ABAT is now gearing up for the 2019 Texas Auto Body Trade Show. The engagement from new and returning exhibitors has already been phenomenal. When I compare where ABAT was at the time of last year’s show to where we are now, it’s clear that our message is getting out there. I encourage everyone to come out and be a…

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    VT Shop Owner Scores Big Short-Pay Win Against Nationwide

    At the end of June, Mike Parker, owner of Parker’s Classic Autoworks in Rutland, VT received a phone call from his attorney Robert McClallen informing him that they’d finally won their short-pay lawsuit against Nationwide. “I was like, ‘Finally, hallelujah!” Parker shared. “There were definitely some useful points made in the case that could be used by shops suing for short-pays in the future, especially against Nationwide – since the Supreme Court hearing utilized a five-panel jury, this could set a precedent that shops’ attorneys would want to point out.” Initially filed in 2015, Parker’s case allowed him to stand in the shoes of 70 customers whose cars had been…