YOU ASK:

How do I make a car accident compensation claim?

WE ANSWER:

If you have been involved in an accident, there are some obligatory steps you need to take, in order to file a compensation claim. Some helpful hints will take you through the process smoothly and ensure that you get what you deserve.

Filing a Car Accident Compensation Claim

There are a few institutions that you must notify promptly in writing:

  • The Department of Motor Vehicles, if the laws in your states require this. Make sure you do this within the required time limits, list all your injuries, describe the accident in as much detail as you can remember, and never admit any responsibility for the crash.
  • The Claims Department. Alternatively, you can go directly to the drivers involved in the accident.
  • Your own insurance company or your insurance agent. Either way, you should expect to receive confirmation within a week. In all probability, your insurer will send you a Right of Subrogation form in which you agree to let the insurance company recover the money from the person liable for the accident, after paying you the compensation. The right of subrogation does not affect in any way your right of compensation. Under the insurance contract, you are also required to cooperate in your insurer's investigation by providing all the details around the accident. The insurer will soon send you a claim adjuster to evaluate your losses.
  • Anyone who you think might have been responsible for the car accident.

When the Other Driver's Insurer Contacts You

Talking to the representative of the other driver involved in the accident might not be the most pleasant thing to do, especially if you have suffered from serious bodily injuries. There are a few tips you need to remember and stick to, when the other driver's insurer phones you:

  • You can only give them basic personal information, like name, address, occupation, but don't go into details.
  • Don't go into details about the accident, even if asked to. Provide a brief and matter-of-fact description of the events and agree to continue the discussion later on, at the right time.
  • Don't give them any information about your injuries and don't sign anything
  • Don't agree to a quick settlement that the other driver's insurer might offer you: you might lose a lot of money!
  • Ask the representative of the other driver to phone you again when you have gathered all the necessary information about the compensation that you are looking for.
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