It is an unpleasant experience to have but accidents do happen. Getting involved in a collision can be traumatic for most people. There are a lot to take in within a very short time and formulate a good response. Quickly shaking of the shock and dealing with the situation can save lives and have other consequences.
The immediate task has got to be making sure everyone is safe. The next step is to make the accident scene safe for people involved and oncoming vehicles. Call the emergency services and police if needed. Then, you can start thinking about the possible claims and calling the carrier.
Probably the most effective preparation for a claim is to buy sufficient coverage. It is too late after the accident to think about these things. Every driver needs to buy liabilities insurance before they can start driving. This is the part that pays for the damages caused to third parties including injuries to people and destruction of property. You will be breaking the law if you fail to purchase this policy and facing a lot of claims on your own.
If you do not have sufficient coverage in place in your health insurance for the injuries suffered in accidents, you may need to consider Personal Injury Protection for yourself and your family. Then, you have to decide if you like to insure your own car or you have enough money to pay for it on your own. If you have a loan on or leased the vehicle, you will have to insure it appropriately.
It is highly advisable to be prepared for accidents. You can check your policy document to find out what you are expected to do in case of a crash. You should always keep at least a copy of the schedule of insurance and the claim line number within the automobile.
It would be useful to gather some information about the accident and maybe take some pictures. But these are not essential especially when the police involved. There are many ways of determining who is at fault in an accident. In most cases damages on the cars involved will tell the story. You can try to exchange, names, contact and insurance details with other drivers. But, if they are not willing, you do not need to push it. The owner of the vehicle will be found from the licence plate.
It is best to find out about how the insurer is proposing to deal with the claims and repairs. This will speed the repair process and ensure that it is carried out in a place and manner you agree. Drivers can start choosing on these options from the moment cars are getting towed away from the scene.
A claim adjuster will probably contact you pretty quickly with his assessments and suggestions. This is the person who will finalize the claim payment in most cases. So, feel free to discuss your concerns with him and ask any questions you have. Remember that it is in everyone’s best interest to settle the matter as early as practically possible. If you are asked to provide further information or clarification, the quicker you respond the better.
If you are offered a satisfactory settlement, it is great. Otherwise, you may be able to reason with the adjuster and get a little increase. Hopefully, it will not come to that but you have other options open to you in case you are not having any luck. This includes arbitration and taking it to court.