If you are a new driver, some of the ins and outs of filing a claim can be confusing. After you file a claim, a lot of things can happen such as your insurance rates rising and, if applicable, your driving record taking a hit. Keep in mind that changes to your auto insurance won’t affect your rate, but the other way around. If you cause an accident and need to file a claim, you will likely see a raise in your auto insurance rates.
This doesn’t mean your auto insurance rates will always go up, however. Simply no fault accidents may not affect your insurance rates. Still, it is important to know what to do when you must file a claim as well as what to expect after.
Filing an Insurance Claim
By making a claim, you give your insurance company the information needed to process the claim and send you the check for your covered amount. The insurer typically assigns a claims adjuster to assess the damages. The adjuster determines the amount of money the insurance should cover. Usually, the claim is paid via a physical check or by direct deposit into your account.
What Should You Do Following an Accident?
To help the claims process go smoothly, perform the following tasks following an accident:
1. Call the police.
2. File an accident report with the authorities.
3. Document all the information you can remember about the accident.
4. Call your insurance carrier.
5. Assist the claims adjustor with truthful answers.
Do You File with the Other Person's Insurance Too?
Following an auto accident, you don't have to file a claim with the other driver's insurance. You only have to report it to your own insurance provider.
Coverage For A Car Accident Or Claim
Claims are paid from your comprehensive or collision coverage, or from any coverage written into your policy. Sometimes, multiple sections of your policy are tapped for damages and other expenses.
Ask your insurance agent how your policy handles the claims process.
Problems with a Claim
Your insurance company should help you throughout the claims process. As a customer, you're entitled to an expeditious claims processing settlement. If you have any problems with the claims adjuster or processor, ask if the company has an ombudsman or supervisor who can expedite your request.
Auto insurance coverage saves you from financial hardships in the case of an accident. Although the claims process can be stressful, knowing how to escalate your claim calmly and coolly helps you resolve any conflicts that arise.