The insurance claim process typically includes five main steps, from the time you report your loss to the resolution of your claim. You can prepare for the process by collecting the relevant documents (think of receipts, original invoices, and proof of ownership), collecting photographs and accounts of the event or damage, and familiarizing yourself with the steps below. An insurance claim is a request that you make to your car insurance company to obtain compensation or coverage for a covered loss. If your claim is approved, you will receive a payment under the terms of your policy for the loss suffered.
1 How do insurance claims work? Most of the things you should do before filing a claim boil down to documenting as much information as possible. The more information you have about the damage to your vehicle, the better prepared you'll be when you contact your insurer. These are typical steps to follow to file a claim. Keep in mind that all of the steps may not apply to your situation.
Your insurer will then pay the shop directly or compensate you for repair bills. 2 The insurance adjuster may decide that your vehicle is a total loss due to the severity of the damage. This usually means that repairing your vehicle isn't safe or will cost more than the value of the car itself. In the case of a totally destroyed vehicle, you or the company through which you are financing or leasing the vehicle may be entitled to receive compensation for the market value of your vehicle.
2 If your car is stolen, you could receive compensation for the value of its replacement cost. In this case, your insurer will pay the payment for a new car of the same make and model as the total car. Check your policy to see if your comprehensive coverage takes this into account, 2.
Personal injurylawyers provide free initial consultations and will represent you on a contingency basis, meaning that they will only be paid if your car insurance claim is successful. Soft tissue injuries are a cause for concern even when a bumper is hit, and injuries raise the stakes when it comes to filing an insurance claim.
File injury claims to your insurance company under personal injury protection (PIP) insurance or MedPay if you have either type of coverage. Your insurance company will only pay for your injuries if you have coverage for medical payments or protection against personal injury. Some states' no-fault auto insurance laws mean that there is no need to determine who is at fault to receive insurance payment for minor injury claims. If you have serious injuries caused by another driver, it's a good idea to contact an attorney to represent you when filing a bodily injury claim.
If you file a personal injury claim with the other driver's insurance company, you can contact an attorney before taking this step.