What do I need to know to make an insurance claim?
If you’ve recently been in an accident and sustained damages or injuries, you are likely thinking about filing an insurance claim. Whether that claim is against your own insurance or the insurance policy of the responsible driver, there is some crucial information you will need if you want to make an insurance claim.
Your claim can be made to receive money for medical expenses, to repair or replace property that has been stolen or damaged, or to fix a vehicle after an accident.
The information that you need to file an insurance claim will depend on where you live, your insurance policy and your reason for filing the insurance claim.
When Filing Against Your Own Insurance
If you are looking to file an insurance claim against your own insurance because your car or property has been vandalized, stolen, or damaged from a non-accident related incident, you will only need information about your own policy.
To prepare to make your claim, you will want to gather specific policy information including who the main policy holder is, the policy number, and the start and end date of your current policy. This will help your insurance company find your policy and discover how much they can give you for your claim.
In addition to information about your policy, you will also need to have the details of the accident. This includes the date and time of the incident. If you’re unsure of when the incident actually occurred, you can provide the date and time that you discovered your vehicle was missing or damaged.
You should also be prepared to provide your contact information and any contact information of any witnesses. Your insurance provider will want to get a full and complete story of what happened, so they will want multiple accounts of the incident if there are other available perspectives.
When Filing Against Another Driver’s Insurance
If you are looking to make an insurance claim against a driver who is at fault for your accident, then you will need some additional information. In most cases, you and the other driver will both want to exchange this information, even if you are not at fault for the accident.
After getting in a crash with another vehicle, you will want to get the name, address, and phone number of the other driver. You should also get their email address and potentially a second phone number if they have one, such as a home or work number.
You will also need to gather information about the other driver’s vehicle. Write down the make, model, and license plate number. You should also include details about where the accident took place, what time the accident took place, and a few key points of the events that lead up to the accident. Documenting these details while they are still fresh in your mind can keep you from getting confused when attempting to relay the story to insurance companies or the police.
Lastly, you will need to get insurance information from the other driver. This includes the company name of their insurance provider and their policy number.
You will want to gather additional information if there is a police officer on the scene and if a police report is filed. This additional information includes the name of the police officer, the badge or the ID number of the police officer, the phone number of the police officer, and the number of the police report.
What if There Are Injuries?
If you’ve been in an accident and there are bodily injuries to you or a passenger who is on your insurance policy, you will need some additional information for filing your claim. First and foremost, you should get the medical attention you need before attempting to collect information from the other driver.
Discuss with your doctor what kind of treatments you will need for your injuries and what future rehabs you may need. When you file a claim for medical bills, you will want the full extent of costs.
After speaking with your doctor about the extent of your injuries, you will also want to get a clear indication of how much time you may miss from work. Knowing how much time you may be out of work because of your injuries is crucial if you are going to seek compensation for lost wages.
You should consider speaking with a personal injury attorney if you have bodily injuries that you will be seeking damages for.