How does an auto insurance claim work after an accident?

My car was recently damaged and I know I need to file a claim. How do I do that? What are the next steps?

“Sorry to hear your car was damaged! Fortunately, filing an auto claim is relatively easy.
Just call your insurance company and explain that you were in an accident. They will want to know details such as:
  • the date
  • time
  • the place of the accident
  • whether there are any injuries
If you have pictures or information from the other driver, that’s also helpful to give to your insurance provider.
After calling your insurance company, they will take over the claims process. If there is no dispute as to who is at fault for the accident, your claim can normally be taken care of with one phone call.
If there is a dispute, the process might drag out for a couple of weeks and your insurance company may double check some information with you. Don’t worry, though. Your insurance company is there to do all of the hard work, so even in a dispute you won’t have to do much work.
Most companies have the ability to set you up with a rental car and an auto damage repair appointment at the same time. To have your car repaired, you pay your deductible to the shop and you are on your way.
Accidents are always scary, but insurance companies are meant to protect you and make the aftermath a bit easier. If you find your current company unsatisfactory or are worried about how your rates will change after the accident, it’s a good to idea to shop around. Jerry compares rates from the top 50 providers and delivers the best deals to your phone in minutes. We’ll do all the paperwork for you and even cancel your old policy.
Jackie Whalen
Answered on Aug 06, 2021
Jackie Whalen has been in the insurance industry for over 7 years, working in sales, service and claims. She has won numerous awards as a top salesperson and customer service agent. She currently lives in New York with her husband. Her 24 year old son recently moved out on his own which has given her more time to travel, write and train her dog Maisy not to chase her cat, Whiskey.

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