With millions of cars on the road every day, traffic
The insurance provider requires proof of injury or damage before paying out to a policyholder. The process takes into account what the two parties involved in the accident relate to the insurance companies, witness reports, damage and the police report. The insurance company will determine how much, if any, it will pay to the consumer only after its representatives have had a chance to analyze all the evidence.
Immediately following an accident, the drive should call 911 if anyone has injuries. The next call, or first one if no one is injured, should be to the local police. All drivers involved should exchange names, contact phone numbers and insurance carrier information. Individuals should gather the contact information for any witnesses.
Sometimes the police officer will estimate the damage to be less than $500 and tell the parties no report is necessary. Drivers should insist on an incident report, at the least. This ensures the insurance carrier has a report prepared by an objective third party and is crucial if one driver changes the story after leaving the scene.
An insurance carrier assigns fault based on the reports. The carrier cannot raise insurance rates if their insured is not responsible for the accident. In addition, the negligent party may owe the other driver for time off work, a rental car and more, depending on the specific policy.
The insured should contact the carrier and begin the filing process with a representative. The carrier will send an adjuster to inspect damage and calculate an estimate for repair or replacement. The carrier deducts any collision deductible according to the policy and pays the insured for the balance.
Carriers with a repair program may refer the insured to an authorized car repair shop. A mechanic will prepare the estimate. The insurer typically pays the repair shop directly for the parts and labor.
Consumers should review the process for auto ins claim filing before they need to do it. People usually are not thinking clearly after an accident. There is less risk of forgetting something if the insured is familiar with the process ahead of time.