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What You Should and Shouldn\'t Do When it Comes to Car Insurance Claims

May 10, 2011

Nobody wants to ever have to make a claim on their car insurance.  We all hope that our car insurance is there as a precaution and that it is something we will never need to use.  Unfortunately however, some people will have to make a claim at some stage and there are certain things that you should and shouldn’t do if you want this handled properly.

  What You Should Do

•    If you have been involved in an accident it is very important that you contact the police to come to the scene especially if neither party is willing to accept responsibility. 
•    You need to get in touch with your car insurance company immediately to inform them of the accident regardless of whether the accident was your fault and even if the other person has accepted responsibility.
•    Take photos of any damage to your car, the other car and the other person.  You might not have a camera in your car but many of us have built in cameras in our phones these days and these can be quite good.
•    Get the insurance details of the other party.  Ask for their name, address and telephone as well and take down the make and model of the car as well as the registration number.
•    Write down as much as you can about any conversations that you have had with the other person involved in the accident and with police officers.  It would also be wise to keep a record of conversations that you have had with representatives of your insurance company.
•    Follow the claims procedure set out in your car insurance policy.  Do everything that is requested of you such as making claims within a specific period of time and providing all the necessary documentation requested by your car insurance company.
•    Keep on top of things after you have made your claim.  It is important that you know that the insurance company is dealing with things in a suitable manner.

What You Shouldn’t Do

•    Do not accept responsibility for an accident if you are not one hundred percent that it was your fault.  Even if you are sure that you were to blame for the accident it might be better to keep quite and let the insurance adjuster determine the cause.
•    Do not leave the scene of the accident without getting the necessary information from the other driver.  You need to get his or her name, address and insurance details.
•    Do not make claims continuously or you will find that your car insurance premiums will go up quite a bit. 
•    Do not file a claim if you think the cost to repair the damage will be less than your voluntary excess.  There is no point and the claim will be recorded against you can could affect how much you pay for your insurance.