Determine the Extent of Damage or Injuries
Accidents are inevitable. This is a fact. And this is why it is imperative that one is able to prepare himself for any eventualities that may arise. Otherwise, what is already bad may become even worse.
With this in mind, many have been engaging the services of Car Accident Insurance companies in order to compensate them for any damages or injuries that they may sustain or those which others may suffer from because of unforeseen events.
Unfortunately, there are some unscrupulous insurance companies who after receiving full payment from their clients, opt to limit or even run away from their obligations. Now, in order to ensure that this does not happen to you at all – then you must know the proper Car Accident Claim Process. Through this, you will know what your rights are – and you will be protected accordingly.
Here are the steps for the Car Accident Claim Process:
You Make The Car Accident Claim
Once you get into a traffic or car accident, you must call your insurer as early as possible. More often than not, the insurance company’s phone number is printed in the policy booklet that was given to you.
Upon calling, you can expect the customer service of your insurer to ask you for certain information, such as your name and address, personal details, your policy number, full details of the accident, and if possible, who do you think is at fault.
After making the call, your insurer will then check your policy and whether it covers the accident. It will check as to whether the driver is actually covered by the policy, or if liabilities to third parties are likewise included. The company will also check and confirm with you if there are any exclusions in your policy that apply to your case and of course – whether you have paid the necessary premiums to be covered
The Insurance Company Manages Your Car Accident Claim
After you make the claim, the ball then goes to the insurer’s court. Your insurance company will try to look into the accident, the incidents that comprise it, and other circumstances that will help them determine the amount of money that it will be indemnifying you for or whether they will be paying you at all.
Take note, however, that if what you have is a full comprehensive insurance, and the company wants to pay you out – then your claim will have to go with its engineering department first.
In this instance, a mechanic hired by your insurer will look into your vehicle and he will try to determine if the damages sustained by your car are actually consistent with the accident report that you submitted to them. The mechanic will then decide as to whether your car will be repaired, or whether it will be more economically feasible for them to subject your car to a “write-off”- wherein the insurer will treat your car as a total loss and it will just pay you out for your car instead of repairing it.
On the other hand, if the mechanic determines that your car can still be repaired – then you will have to take it to a repair shop which has actually been approved by it. This is because of the fact that more often than not, these approved garages already have existing contracts with your insurer, which means that they will be saving more money with them. Now, if you want the services of a non-approved garage, then you will have to bring the car to your preferred garage, have it estimated yourself, and before any repairs can be done over it – you will have to seek the approval of your insurer first.
The Insurance Company Judges Your Car Accident Claim
After you make the claim, and the insurance company manages it – the next thing that will happen is its determination as to whether your claim is within the terms of your insurance contract with them.
In this stage of the process, the company will either pay for the repairs of your car minus those that you will be personally liable for. If you do have some personal expenses that you will have to shoulder, then you will have to pay them first before you can actually get your car back after repairs.
Now, if your car has been “written-off”, then you can expect that the pay that you will be receiving will have to depend on the market value of your before the accident occurred. In this stage of the process, you can consult with a mechanic if the negotiated pay-out is commensurate to the value of your car, or the modifications that you have done with it, if any.
However, you must remember that you can always renegotiate the final pay out that is being offered to you. If you think that the offer is unfair, then talk with them about it. If they insist otherwise, then you can always consult the services of an Accident lawyer or an insurance lawyer to help you. These guys will know what to do.
In the end, what is primordial is that you are able to get the best deal that you deserve. After all, insurance companies are there to ensure that the problems that car accidents bring along should be shouldered by them. And if they are not able to that – then you should act accordingly. Remember, everyone must be protected – most especially you.