Did you know that a car crash resulting in property damage only cost an estimated $4,700 per vehicle in 2020?
Now that everything is more expensive, you can expect a crash to cost even more nowadays. That’s enough reason never to drive without car insurance. Otherwise, you’d be liable to pay for your car’s repairs or property you damaged in an accident.
However, even if you have auto insurance Chester, VA, you must still file auto insurance claims for your policy to kick in.
Don’t worry, as we’ll discuss the steps for filing such claims below, so read on.
Contact Your Auto Insurance Provider
Call your auto insurer first before sending your vehicle to any garage for repairs. Let them know that you’ve been in an accident and that your ride sustained damages.
Your auto insurance company then sends a surveyor to inspect and confirm the damages. After that, you and your insurer receive a copy of the surveyor’s report.
Determine Your Type of Claim
You have two insurance claim options to choose from, cashless or reimbursement.
With a cashless claim, your insurer directly pays the garage that fixed your car. However, this method only applies to repairs done at a garage with a tie-up to your insurer.
Thus, it’s best to get your car fixed by a mechanic or auto body shop partnered with your insurance provider.
Otherwise, you’d have to make a reimbursement claim in which you pay for the repair costs first. Then, after the garage fixes your vehicle, you must send the bills to your insurance company. Your insurer then writes a check for the amount you spent.
Fill Out the Insurance Claim Form
Please fill out your insurance provider’s claim form, which you can find on their website. You can also request physical documents to fill out by hand. Either way, make sure you create a copy of the filled-out form for your records.
Ensure you don’t leave any crucial details, such as if you got hit by an uninsured motorist. You can also read some additional tips here on what to do if you were in a crash with an uninsured driver.
Submit Requested Documents
Along with your claim form, you must send copies of documents requested by your insurer. These include a copy of your insurance policy, driver’s license, and car registration. You can also submit records of expenses, damages, and repairs you already have.
Let Your Insurer Process the Claim
Your insurance company reviews the claim form and documents you submitted. One of their agents then verifies all the information you’ve provided.
If everything checks out, your insurance company then pays the garage. However, if you had your car fixed in an “out-of-network” garage, your insurer writes you a check. The amount should be enough to reimburse you for any covered damages you incurred.
That’s How to File Auto Insurance Claims
Remember: Property damage, injuries, and deaths due to car crashes cost the US $474 billion in 2020. That should tell you how vital having car insurance is.
So, always keep your car insurance policy up-to-date. And if you ever get into a crash, make sure you follow the steps in this guide on filing auto insurance claims.
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