Learn How to File a Car Accident Claim
The content below is to help those seeking to file a car accident claim which has occurred within the past two years.
First, Have You Been Injured?
Keep in mind that one of the worst mistakes that you can make after being involved in a car crash which involves any bodily injury is to not file a car accident claim. You could be suffering from shock which can keep you from feeling the full extent of any injury you sustained.
In some cases, the injury may feel minor, initially, and many people believe that they don’t need to visit a doctor. Many people have hastily declined medical attention or received a nominal settlement quickly, only to learn of a more serious neck or back injury in the following months.
Serious car accident injuries complicate the claims recovery process and settlement offers may not give you sufficient payment for the hurt and loss you experience. If you suffered serious injury or are still unsure about the claim process, contact one of our experienced attorneys for a no-cost initial consultation.
File Your Car Crash Claim
Even if you have been involved in a motor vehicle collision before, it is common to not know exactly what to do after the car crash. To protect yourself from unexpected claims and damages after a crash occurs, it is essential that you know how to file a car accident claim.
In this article, you will learn
- What happens at the accident scene to the day that your car is repaired and back on the road.
- Who you need to contact after the accident. In serious injury accidents, it is important to do more than just contact your auto insurance company.
- Which forms that need to be filled out.
- Above all, how to take care of yourself if you suffered any injuries.
What You Need & How to File an Auto Accident Claim
The actual claims process begins at the crash scene.
If you were not injured, exchange information with the other driver. You will need to report the following information to your insurance company:
- Your full name and insurance policy number
- The start and end date of your policy
- The date, time, and location of the accident
- Names, addresses, and phone numbers of all drivers, all passengers, and any witnesses
- The driver’s license numbers and license plate number for all drivers
- Photos of the accident
You will also be required to give your insurance company a sworn account of your version of the events of the accident. This includes how the accident occurred, the weather conditions, and any injuries that you may have suffered.
How to Submit Your Claim
If you are involved in a minor accident with no injuries to any party, you may be able to handle the claims process yourself. Most of the claims submission process is done over the phone, and sometimes from the scene of the accident.
- Contact your insurance agent and the agent will guide you through the claims process.
- You may be required to sign a sworn statement; it can be emailed, faxed, or sent to you in the mail.
- If you have any photos of your vehicle or your injuries, you can send this information the same way.
However, if you were seriously injured, we advise you to consult an experienced lawyer for advice on how to provide your claims information to the insurance company.
- Compensation for damages that occur to your property or body must be addressed in your claim.
- A list of possible claim issues has been provided in the following paragraphs.
A claims adjuster’s job is to investigate your claim and to appraise the damages caused by the accident. The adjuster also negotiates your compensation amount.
The stages of investigation are usually broken down into the following steps:
- Getting a repair cost estimate on the damage to the vehicle.
- Depending on your insurance company and the condition of your vehicle, you may be able to take your vehicle to a nearby body shop for repair. Other insurance companies require you to use their list of pre-approved body shops.
- Many insurance companies will send a claims adjuster right to your home or business to assess the amount of damage to your vehicle.
- If you were injured, you will need to provide the insurance company with any medical notes from the day of the accident.
The sooner the investigation process is completed, the sooner the claims process will be over. If you are getting stuck in the red tape or are too injured to handle the investigation process on your own, you have the option to contact one of our experienced attorneys.
Depending on the extent of the damages, you may be eligible to gain compensation for any of the following:
- medical bills
- lost wages
- pain and suffering
- property damage
If you were not at fault in the crash, the responsible party’s insurance company will contact you to offer you a settlement amount after the investigation is completed. This settlement may be less than what you deserve. Sometimes a settlement amount is offered before you know the full extent of your bodily injuries.
Be wary of agreeing to a settlement offer especially if you were involved in a serious crash.
Agreeing to a settlement offered by the insurance company requires you to sign a waiver saying that you won’t sue the insurance company or the responsible party later. Insurance companies do this so that they can protect their own interests.
If you were involved in a motor vehicle crash, especially one that involved serious injury, you want to speak to an experienced attorney who can explain more about the claims process give you car crash insurance claims advice. Remember, if you did not cause the accident, the financial burden should not be placed on you.
Speak to an Experienced Accident Attorney
If you were involved in a motor vehicle crash, contact one of our experienced auto accident attorneys to get a clear understanding of your claim. We can handle the negotiation process for you and help you get the compensation you deserve. Our attorneys are experienced dealing with the insurance company so you can regain focus on your life.