If your vehicle suffers damage in a collision or an act of vandalism, you might want to file an auto insurance claim to cover the loss. Knowing what to do and what to expect makes the process easier. This guide will help you avoid pitfalls and get back on the road quickly and safely.
3 Steps When Submitting a Claim on Auto Insurance
1. Establish How the Damage Happened
If the car accident wasn’t your fault, notify your insurer, obtain a police report, and file your claim against the other driver’s liability insurance policy. Another option is filing the claim under your car’s collision insurance coverage. Your insurer pays your claim and recovers the amount from the other driver’s insurer.
When you are at fault, or the accident’s fault is unclear, file one claim with your insurance company and the other with the driver’s insurer to resolve the issue. Proceed under your policy’s comprehensive coverage for repairs if your car is vandalized, stolen, or suffers damage in severe weather.
2. Communicate With the Claims Adjuster
The insurance company’s claims adjuster evaluates the damage and says what the company will pay. Your first contact may be by phone. The adjuster examines the vehicle damage or asks you to take it to a certified repair shop for inspection.
Ask the adjuster how long it will take to investigate the claim. Do not have any repairs made before you receive the adjuster’s report, or you may not be reimbursed.
After reviewing the policy, evaluating the facts, and inspecting the damage, the adjuster will make an initial payment offer. Before accepting, ask whether the replacement parts are from the original equipment manufacturer (OEM,) and get estimates from the repair shops of your choice. When you are satisfied with the amount, the adjuster authorizes the final payment and asks you to sign a release. Be sure that you are happy with the amount since you are accepting it as full payment after the final signing.
Purchasing the right auto insurance coverage protects you when it’s time to make a claim. Trust Tim Bryan Insurance in Andalusia, AL, to offer the car insurance coverage you need at reasonable rates. As an experienced State Farm® agent, he works effectively to help you find the best policies for auto, home, and business. To learn more, visit his website, or call (334) 222-1460 to get a car insurance quote.
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