Car accidents are stressful already but these helpful and easy-to-remember steps will make filing a car accident claim with your insurance company a breeze.
Step 1: Immediately Contact Your Insurer The key to the claims process if you have been in an accident is to tell your insurer as soon as possible so you don’t invalidate your insurance policy. You should check the notification time-period after a car accident set by your insurer. You should find this information in your policy information schedule.
Step 2: Giving the Right Accident Details Once you have contacted your insurer, you need to include the following: • Date, time and location of accident • Weather conditions at the time of the accident • How the accident occurred If your accident involves another car, you should include the following: • Name and address of the other driver • Vehicle registration of the other car • Contact details for the other driver • Car insurance details of the other driver • If the other driver is uninsured: report the accident to the police and your insurer Helpful Tip: It would be very beneficial if you take pictures of the accident scene and all vehicles involved in the accident.
Step 3: The Paperwork Your insurer will probably send you some paperwork to complete detailing the accident, make sure you have all the relevant documents handy. Make sure you fully complete the forms including any additional information required. Helpful Tips: • At the scene of the accident, don’t admit fault unless you are completely sure it was your mistake. • Always exchange all your relevant details with the other driver at the scene (all the information you would give to your insurer- date, time, weather, your name, registration details, your car’s details and snap a few pictures of the scene on your mobile phone) • Make sure you get the contact details of any witnesses present • A case number from the police is crucial if your car has been damaged due to theft, vandalism, or unlawful conduct (drunk driving or speeding) • Always notify your insurer, even if you only have a small bumper bash or scratch otherwise you may invalidate your insurance policy
Step 4: Insurance Companies Communicate The insurance company of the other driver or persons involved will be in contact with your insurer to resolve the claims. Helpful Tip: Before you get your car fixed, be aware that some insurance providers will only pay for their own approved mechanics. Be sure to get the insurance approved mechanic’s details otherwise, you could be fitting the bill for the repairs. Helpful Tip: No-claims bonuses are offered by various car insurance companies, which will give a portion of the unclaimed insurance money collected over a few years (insurer dependent) back to you. Some insurance companies offer discounts for each following year in which you don’t make a claim. The finer details of how much your insurer will give you, the time restrictions, and further information will be solely insurer dependent. However, your no-claims bonus may become void if you are in part or fully responsible for an accident but this is also dependent on your insurer.
©Diane Moalem for Compare Guru