It is an unpleasant experience for sure and 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 positive effects.
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. Should you need call the emergency services and police. Then, you can start thinking about the possible auto insurance claims and calling the carrier.
Probably the most effective preparation for it is to buy sufficient coverage. It is too late to think about these things after something happens. Every driver needs to buy liability car insurance before they can hit the roads. This is the part that pays for 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 to compensate others out of pocket. This would cause a lot of stress on heads and wallets.
You may need to consider adding Personal Injury Protection if you do not have a good health plan to pay for own and family members’ traffic related injuries. Then, you have to decide to protect own car with Collision and Comprehensive options or leave them out. Having a loan on or lease agreement would force you to arrange full coverage vehicle insurance for it. But most motorists buy a full policy anyway.
It is advisable to be prepared for the worst-case scenarios. You can check the 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 and the claim line number within the automobile or store it on the cell phone. It is usually a one-page document with all the essential information.
It would be useful to gather a few details about the accident and take some pictures. But these are not essential especially when the police involved. There are many ways of determining who is at fault. 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 settlement in most cases. So, feel free to discuss your concerns with him or her and ask any questions you have. Remember that it is in everyone’s best interest to settle the matter as early as practically possible. The quicker you respond the better it is when you are asked to provide further information or clarification.
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 likely to come to an amicable agreement. This includes getting own representative, arbitration and taking it to court. You should always keep the costs and time frame in mind when considering each option.