No matter how minor or major it may be, there’s no doubting the fact that any type of car accident can be quite troublesome to deal with and manage properly. From the settlement phase, all the way to paying necessary fines, everything that happens after the car accident makes for a whirlwind experience that can test your patience.
The problem with car accidents is that most drivers typically don’t know what to do afterwards, regardless of whether or not they’re at fault. If you haven’t been in an accident yet or still haven’t been able to get the hang of the process after getting into a few minor bumps and scratches, then it is essential to understand what you’ll have to do, especially when it comes to making a claim on your car insurance.
Most drivers tend to worry about the following right after they get into a car accident with a significant amount of damage:
- The process of making a claim on their car insurance
- The amount of time it takes before a claim is settled
- The costs that have been incurred as a result of the accident
Let’s go over a few common questions about making a claim on your car insurance and answer them one by one:
- “What if I’m involved in a car accident?”
First and foremost, it is imperative to ensure that you and everyone else in your car are safe because that’s much more important than the damage inflicted.
Then, talk to the other driver and ask for their name and number for insurance purposes and give them your important information as well. You must also get their car registration number, insurance details, and address to track them easier during the settlement process.
- “Who should I call in case of an accident?”
Once everything has settled down, move everyone to a safe area far away from the scene of the accident and contact emergency services right away. Emergency services are needed if the following is present:
- The accident is blocking the road or has scattered large chunks of debris (ex., glass, steel, fibreglass) all over it
- There is damage to the road surface or street fixtures (ex., fallen lamp posts, traffic lights, signs)
- The other party involved in the accident fled or left the scene without leaving any contact information
- “If there’s no significant damage, can I just leave the scene?”
It is absolutely not recommended to leave the scene without a proper settlement or detailing of events, as you can be framed for fleeing the scene of an accident that can land you a fine of £2,500 (or 10 points on your licence).
- “Is there any way that I can make the insurance claim process easier and speed it up?”
You can speed up the insurance claim process (even if you don’t have a dashcam in your car) by taking pictures, videos, and notes of the following details at the scene of the accident:
- Make, model and colour of each vehicle involved in the accident
- New vs. old damage on both cars
- Location of impact
- Any injuries to yourself or other passengers caused by the accident
- “How long should I wait until I make a claim on my car insurance?”
After a car accident, it’s best to make a claim within the same day or as soon as you can to ensure that the details are still fresh and can be inspected thoroughly. While the restriction on how long you can report a claim may vary from provider to provider, it is best to do so within 24 hours after the accident has taken place.
Dealing with a car accident can be a sticky situation that can take quite some time for you to figure out if you aren’t familiar with the entire process that takes place afterwards. Keep this guide in mind so you will know what to do if you find yourself in an unfortunate car accident.
If you are looking for car excess insurance cover in the UK, get in touch with us to see how we can help.