If unfortunately you are involved in an accident, it will help you to know what to do to fight the nerves and to be able to collect the information for the claim.
In the place of an accident
- Stop your car and if there are injured ask for help immediately.
- Call the police or the highway patrol. Inform emergency personnel if there are injuries, how many people and the type of injuries. The police will be in charge of notifying the nearest medical unit.
- Help the injured but do not move them, as this could aggravate their condition. Many times the only thing you can do for someone hurt is to provide support and companionship, and if it is within your reach, a blanket, blanket or some type of coat to keep you warm.
- When the police arrive, provide as much information as you can; and if it is a clash, get a copy of the police report or collision report; If you do not have it, find out where you can get a copy, because you will need it to make the insurance claim.
- Find a way to protect your car and your safety at the accident site. You can place signals to divert other drivers, move the vehicle to the shoulder of the road or call a tow truck. If you tow your car, ask the tow truck to take it directly to the workshop that is authorized by your insurance company to make the repairs.
- Make sure they do not begin repairs until an expert inspect the damage, so that the insurer can calculate how much they cost and issue repair or compensation orders.
- While at the accident site, take notes of what happened, the names and addresses of the people involved, the police officer who took the case, witnesses to the accident, and of course, the person involved in the crash. Write down the description and license plate of the car or cars involved.
- In the event that the crash occurs while the other vehicle was parked and without its owner, be sure to leave the contact information for the other driver. In case you have a camera at hand, take pictures of the accident.
And when making the claim to the insurer follow these steps:
- Contact your insurer or insurance agent as soon as possible, regardless of who was at fault for the accident. Find out if you are covered for the type of damage you have suffered; Even when they seem small, it is important that you inform your insurer about the incident.
- Ask your agent or the company representative how you should proceed and what forms or papers you will need to document the claim. The insurer will ask for proof of the claim and if there is a police report, a copy of it. Nowadays it is increasingly common for insurers to have systems that allow them to monitor the progress of their claim with Internet access.
- Provide the company with the documents requested. Fill out the documentation carefully and keep a copy of everything for your files. It is important that you have good documentation of what happens, of all the expenses receipts related to the accident and of the people (names and telephones) involved in it.
Ask the following questions to your insurance agent:
- What, if any, is the time limit for you to make a claim to the company and deliver the related invoices?
- What is the time limit in which disputes over claims will be resolved?
- How long must you wait for the insurer to contact you back?
- Do I need to get estimated repairs for the damages suffered?
- The coverage of the policy includes or not the payment for a rented car while your car is in repairs; and if positive, how much coverage for rental car is included?