Quick Tips for Handling Auto Accident Claims

Memorial Day is right around the corner and this is considered to be the kick off to the summer season.  It is also the time with the highest number of traffic accidents.   No one wants to be in an auto accident, but unfortunately sometimes they happen.   Most of us know the law requires you to stop and exchange information when involved in an accident, but other aspects are sometimes overlooked. Below are some helpful tips to keep in mind if you are involved in an automobile accident:

  • If the accident is minor, move the vehicles off the road to exchange information.  We have all been stuck in traffic only to crawl past an accident that could have been moved off the road.
  • Obtain the license plate number and/or vehicle identification number of the other vehicle involved.
  • Record the location and extent of damages to all vehicles in involved.  If possible take a few photos with your cell phone.
  • Don’t admit fault.  That’s a decision for the insurance companies.
  • Above all else, be calm, courteous and polite.   You would be surprised how much this helps to mitigate the damages, especially on injury claims.

A few questions that you might have:

  1. Should you call your insurance company if it was the other persons fault? – Yes, technically you need to call the claim into your carrier.  Most policies state all claims are to be reported. 
  2. Should you set an expectations for how long the insurance company will take? – How long everything takes is definitely subjective as it varies from carrier to carrier and severity of the accident.
  3. Will an accident impact your driving record? – Impact on a driving record is also subjective to the situation.   Reporting requirements vary by state.

Any questions on handling claims?  Please contact Linda Wood, Senior Claims Analyst, at WoodLL@ecsinsure.com or at 301-948-5800 ex. 187.

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