First, let’s understand what an insurance claim really is. By understanding the process, we are able to better understand it. It is also easier to follow because we know exactly what each step means.
When you file a claim, the insurance company will pay you compensation for the damages you sustained in a car accident.
Car insurance is expensive. If you are in an accident, it is important to file a claim. Your insurance company can provide coverage depending on what type of car insurance you have.
Comprehensive coverage, collision coverage or any other minimum car insurance requirements section, such as liability, can all be used to pay claims. Depending on the circumstances surrounding your car accident, claims may be paid from several sections of your policy.
The good news is that you don’t have to worry about whether the collision claims process will prove more complicated than the actual accident. You can collect all the information you need by following a structured approach and meticulously recording what happened. These guidelines will ensure that the process runs smoothly.
OVER THE ACCIDENT SCENE
The best way to speed up the claims process is to start at the accident scene. The more evidence and information you can gather there, the better.
Here are the steps:
- Personal data: Get basic information from all those present at the scene. This includes passengers, drivers, and other bystanders. You should get their phone numbers, home addresses, and email addresses. Any information that can make it easier for you to locate them later. Note down what each witness heard and saw if you have the time. Send all this information to your claims adjuster. Keep a copy for yourself.
- Insurance Information This information is very important. It is important to share insurance information with all drivers involved in an accident. This is likely to be the first thing an adjuster will ask you for.
- Photos: Take lots of photos of the accident site. You can take photos before vehicles are moved, but you shouldn’t make it dangerous to do so. You should take pictures of any damage to your car and other vehicles involved. Also, take a few photos of the accident site. It is always useful to have a variety of angles. If possible, take photos of all parties and witnesses. Finally, make sure to take pictures of each party’s insurance card.
- Law Enforcement Always contact the police following an accident. It’s possible for them to not respond immediately, but it’s worth trying. Make sure you get their names when they arrive. Once they have completed their reports, they will collect your information and interview you. They will also instruct you how to get a copy of the report. Keep any paperwork they give you, and send copies to your adjuster.
Contact Your Insurer ASAP
You’ve probably heard the expression, “Most crimes are solved within 48 hours of the incident.” This is because the crime scene remains intact, and witnesses still have fresh memories of details. It’s almost like an auto accident. Although we aren’t talking about a crime (I hope), the idea is still valid. Your insurer will respond quicker if you contact them as soon as possible. If possible, it’s a good idea to contact them at the scene of an accident.
Be cooperative and prompt
Your adjuster can handle most small accidents easily. They have done it hundreds of times. However, this doesn’t mean that claims can’t be supported by missing evidence or information.
Your adjuster should leave a message for you to return the call as soon as possible. It is essential to have good communication between the claimant and the insurer. It’s difficult to complain about slow processing when you’re the one causing it.
Although this rule is obvious, not everyone observes it. You are human and want to avoid pain. However, admitting you were at fault can make it very painful. If you’re at fault for the accident, don’t lie to try and get out. Insurance adjusters are very familiar with fibbers and accidents.
They are very good at figuring out the truth and can make a lot of mistakes if you are not forthcoming. Do you remember “Double Indemnity?” Insurance fraud is a serious offense and can cost you more than the increase in your premiums if you admit to it.
If you want a quick conclusion to your claims process, being dishonest can slow it down and sometimes even bring it to an abrupt halt.