Car accidents vary in nature. For instance, a vehicle that suffers damage when a rock bounces and breaks the windshield is very different from a car that is totalled, injuring the driver/passengers in the process. These are totally two types of accidents, and not just based on severity.
Well, before you can jump in the insurance claims process, it is important to know the most common types of car accident claims, what they entail, how they are handled and how to file each one of them.
Property Damage Claims
These are claims that cover damage to cars and property as a result of an accident. These damages can be anything from a car hitting a mailbox, to a truck crashing into a shop. Of course, the insurance company is responsible, at-fault of the driver, for compensating the damage. In such cases, liability is determined by the vehicle and not the driver.
When property damage occurs as a result of an accident, it is best to file a claim as soon as possible. If the fault in property damage is apparent, then you might want to contact the insurance provider of the driver at fault to prevent paying a deductible by going through your own insurance provider.
Bodily Injury Insurance Claims
If you’re involved in a car accident that causes body injury, then you will need to file a bodily injury insurance claim. In most accidents, the victims will file a claim with the insurance provider of the driver at fault. However, you might need to file a claim with your insurance provider if you live in a state or country that requires liability insurance to cover personal injury.
When you have contacted the insurance company, their adjustor will calculate what the claim is worth by assessing the compensatory damages.
Third Party Insurance Claims
When filing a car insurance claim, you’ll have one of two options: going through the insurance firm of the driver responsible for the accident, or through your own insurance provider. Of you think that the other driver caused the crash, then filing a third party claim is the ideal option as you will avoid involving your insurance company.
However, third party claims are not without their problems. While you might be used to communicating with your insurer, negotiating with the driver at-fault insurance provider can be rather difficult. Since you are not their client and you are seeking compensation from a company you don’t pay, it will certainly be a challenging task seeking damage payments.
Also, third party insurance providers usually try to refuse claims saying there’s not enough evidence to determine fault. Well, if you feel that the insurance company has denied your claim, or intentionally delaying your compensations, then you can always seek advice from a car accident attorney or an insurance bad faith lawyer. An attorney specialized in dealing with insurance providers will certainly be able to assess whether your claim is founded. If so they will do their job to get the compensation you are entitled to, under the law.