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How To Claim Car Insurance After Accident?

Please note, that you can claim benefits for damages and other causes depending upon the nature and coverage of your car insurance policy.

Car Insurance Claims Process – Browse our step by step guide on car insurance claim process.

What is an Insurance Claim?

An insurance claim is an official request that a policyholder makes to an insurance company for compensation for the damages incurred by them. Compensation is provided by the insurance company as per the coverage guaranteed to the policyholder under the insurance agreement.

An insurance claim can be made in 2 ways – cashless and reimbursement mode.

  • In case of car insurance, when a policyholder gets his car repaired at the partner garage of the insurance company, the claim is settled in a cashless manner as the insurance company pays directly for the repair expenses incurred in the garage.
  • However, if the policyholder gets his car repaired in a garage that is not a part of the insurance company’s partner garage, the policyholder will have to pay the repair cost at the garage himself and the same will be reimbursed to the policyholder by the Insurance provider, subject to the sum insured.

Car Insurance Claim Process

The driver needs to be responsible for the miles you travel when you drive a car on the road. Accidents can happen on the road at any time, even with caution. It could be accident, theft, fire or any other unfortunate incident. To claim all the benefits of the insurance company, you need to contact your insurance agent or the company immediately.

Please note, that you can claim benefits for damages and other causes depending upon the nature and coverage of your car insurance policy.

Documents Required To Process Car Insurance Claim

The car insurance claim settlement process requires the policyholder to submit certain documents to validate and accept the claim car insurance.

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You have to complete the insurance claim document along with submitting the required documents. These are the following documents required in the claim settlement process.

  • Copy of the insurance policy
  • First Information Report (FIR) filed with the police station
  • Copy of the driver’s license
  • Copy of the registration certificate of the car

Additional documents in case of reimbursement claim

  • A brief estimate of the repairs
  • Medical report in case of physical injuries
  • Original records of other expenses

6 Simple Steps To Claim Car Insurance After Accident

Car Insurance

How to claim car insurance? To get the most out of your car insurance policy, immediately inform your car insurance company and the police about the intensity of the accident and damage.

If your insurance company finds your claim to be genuine, they will reimburse the amount after inspecting your vehicle or other aspects.

Here are some steps to help you claim your damages successfully:

Step 1: Notify your insurance company immediately

Call your car insurance company immediately and notify them of the incident first. Since the time limit is restricted, within seven working days, you must inform the insurer about the accident, failing which your claim settlement period will be deemed to have lapsed. Also, you can also take a photo of the car that crashed.

To make a claim, you need to submit important documents like softcopy of your driving license, car registration certificate, FIR along with the first two pages of your insurance policy. You may also need a detailed letter addressed to the Road Transport Office (RTO).

Step 2: Register an FIR in the nearest police station

Inform the police and file an FIR as it is an essential step in the car claim settlement process in incidents like theft, fire or road accident involving third party damages.

FIR can be avoided in situations where there are dents and scratches on the vehicle. This is necessary when there is a bodily injury or third party accident. Police will go to the spot to identify the fault and clarify whether the accident was due to mechanical fault or not. It will also record all the necessary details of the driver, vehicle, passengers and witnesses or other aspects in the FIR.

Additionally, you need to file a case with the Motor Accident Claims Tribunal in whose jurisdiction the accident occurred between you and the third party. This is only necessary if a third party is involved in the accident.

Step 3: Capture photographs as valid proof

Some people prefer to go ahead with the reimbursement claim. Capturing the scene of the events with a photograph can be helpful in these types of cases. You can take some pictures of the accident which includes damage to your car, bodily injury etc., and serve as valid proof during claim settlement. Also, you can note down the names, contact numbers of your witnesses, third parties (if any involved) so that it can help you in the whole process.

Step 4: Submit all the documents to the insurer

The next step after the FIR is to proceed towards claim settlement. It can be started only after submitting all the important documents to the insurance company. Make sure to submit all the copies of documents like driving license, car registration certificate, FIR, and other required information.

Step 5: Ask the insurance company to send a surveyor

File a claim with your insurance company and ask them to start with a surveyor, complete with a thorough inspection process. You can also make a claim online by visiting the website of the insurance company or other web portal if they provide any such facility.

In case of cashless claim settlement, a representative will be dispatched by the insurance people who will try to assess the all-important damage done to your car. He or she will assist in the right network of garages where your car can possibly be taken down. Towing will be done by the insurance company to ensure that there is no further damage to the vehicle. The survey is usually done within a couple of working days of the notification of a car insurance claim.

Step 6: Car repair

Get your car repaired and start the claim process. Claim settlement can be done in two processes. If one prefers to make a cashless claim, then he need not bear the burden of repairing cost. In such cases, it is recommended to take the vehicle to the list of network garages prescribed by the insurance company. The policyholder only needs to pay for the deductibles and the rest is covered by the insurer.

On the other hand, if one goes ahead with the reimbursement claim, he/she will have to pay for all the losses out of his/her own pocket. In this case, he has to submit the original bills, receipts, medical reports, photographs etc. to the insurance company. The insurer will reimburse all repair amounts after deducting all deductions. Here the policyholder can get his car repaired at his preferred garage.

Additional procedure:

After it finds if your claim is genuine, your car insurance company will reimburse the amount as per the terms and conditions mentioned in your insurance cover. The amount to be reimbursed and the incidents to be covered also depend on the type of car insurance policy you hold.

Third-party insurance is mandatory as per the Motor Tariff Act, and it will only bear the cost of damages due to third party involvement. Comprehensive car policy gives comprehensive coverage under one umbrella, and you can extend it even further with extended add-ons.

The claim settlement process can be a bit complicated, and hence, it is suggested that policyholders should read the policy documents carefully, which the insurance company sends. All inclusion and exclusion reports will be provided in detail. A third opinion can also be taken from a lawyer in this regard.

Points to Remember After A Car Accident to Raise A Claim

No matter how much you know about your insurance company’s claims process. It is important to keep a few points in mind after an accident or accident which ensures a hassle free claim settlement process for you. Here are some points you must remember to make a successful claim after a car accident:

  • Immediately check yourself and your car after an accident to confirm and determine whether any major bodily injuries or damage is sustained by you or the insured car. Based on the level of damage or injury, you can call for medical assistance or any other support.
  • Raise the claim for damage within a stipulated time set by your insurance provider, which is generally within 24 hours of the accident. Delay in raising a claim can lead to its rejection.
  • Try to note down the registration number of the car, make, model and variant of the car, and/or colour of the car that is involved in the collision or accident to catch the culprit or raise the claim in a better and successful manner.
  • Conversate with the eye witnesses who were present at the location of the accident and note down their names and contact details so you can get in touch with them in the future to confirm the person or persons responsible for the mishap or the accident.
  • In case you find that accidental damage caused to the insured car is minor, in such a case, you can avoid raising a claim to secure your no claim bonus. You should assess this type of situation at the earliest and take immediate action accordingly.
  • You should not get involved in any type of brawl after the accident with a third party person. Doing so can create unnecessary trouble for you in the future.
  • Do not make any statement or share any information with the police or your insurance company if you are not sure about it or unless you are not confirmed about your next steps.
  • Move your insured car away from the spot of the accident spot to get it repaired or for any related purpose only after getting permission from the police and your insurance provider.
  • Keep all the required documents handy as you may have to submit several documents before the insurance company for the settlement of the claim with the duly filled and signed claim form. You may also need to produce some documents before the surveyor during the inspection of your car.
  • If your insurance company provides the cashless claim facility, in such a case, you can take your car to a network garage for repair where you can get it repaired without paying anything from your pocket. In such situations, the garage will be paid for directly by your insurer.

Disclaimer: This article is issued in general public interest and meant for general information purposes only. Readers are advised not to rely on the contents of the article as conclusive in nature and should research further or consult an expert in this regard.

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