Gov. Tom Wolf

          Gov. Tom Wolf

Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf has signed legislation that permits vehicle damage appraisers to prepare a repair estimate based on submitted photos or videos.

The bill amends a state law that previously required in-person physical inspections for the preparation of a repair estimate.

The new law prohibits appraisers or insurance companies from requiring a photo or video submission to obtain an appraisal, however.

The change in law reflects how smartphones have transformed, in many respects, how businesses and their customers communicate today.

Rep. Mike Tobash, a Republican who represents parts of Schuylkill and Dauphin counties, introduced the legislation. A total of 45 other states already allow for the use of photos or video in the appraisal process for accident damages, he said.

In the state Senate, an amendment was added to the bill requiring physical inspections for disputed claims.

The new law goes into effect in mid-June. For more details about the law, click here.