Motor vehicle owners insure their vehicles as a form of financial indemnity after an accident. This indemnity as it is can be custom planned for you, and your vehicular needs. No one minds shelling out a few hundred dollars in exchange of the peace of mind a good insurance policy can provide.
However the sad truth is that after an accident most car owners are shocked to know that the worst isn’t over yet. Here we aim to help you understand, what and how you must proceed after an accident.
Call your insurance company and inform them of the accident, be co-operative and volunteer information, and most importantly, be honest. Insurance companies send over adjusters, to access the extent of the damage, and understand what exactly happened. If you do lie, and get caught by the company’s adjuster, needles to say, your claim won’t go through, but your policy might also be suspended, and worse still, you might end up incarcerated! That being said, each company allots you a specified amount of time after the accident, to file a claim; details of the time allotment can be found in your insurance policy document. Many insurance companies see a delay as an attempt to tamper with evidence, and hence they reject the claim.
Always ensure you call the police in the event of an accident; even if the two parties involved in the accident decide to amicably exchange their insurance information and split ways, it is very likely that their attorneys’ or insurance advisors will propose a claim settlement from you. A police report sets the record straight, and defines who was at fault, and what happened, and can contradict the possibility of a lawsuit being filed against you at a later date. Most insurance companies will not accept your claim, if it is not backed up by a police report. Always ensure you check the police report before you leave the scene of the accident.
Never inflate the amount in your claim. If an adjuster finds your claim to be exaggerated, your claim is rejected as fraudulent, and you will need to pay for all the damages, physical, medical, and any other that apply. It’s a safer bet to make a realistic claim, and settle for what they give you, than loose your entire indemnity in the process.
Be prepared to receive a call from the other party’s attorney, or either of the party’s insurance companies. Make sure to remember the occurrences of that day, make a note of them, you never know when you will need it. If a little confusion sets in, and you make a single mistake, they will definitely accuse you of a fraudulent report submitted
Many accidents lead to eventual law suits, not just with the other party, but also with the insurance companies. No one likes to read the fine print, but in reality, this is what can protect your best interests. A lawsuit with an insurance company is likely to last for a very long time, and in most cases, since you have signed on the dotted line, and accepted the fine print, the insurance company will win the case. Not only is this very time consuming, but also a huge financial set back for someone who has just been in an accident. The best way to negate such an occurrence is to read your offer document carefully before signing.