Every year in the United States, there are over 6.75 million car accidents on average. You, too, might be involved in one of these accidents if luck isn’t in your favor.
If you’ve ever been involved in a car accident, you know the last thing you want to do is deal with insurance companies. Yet, if you don’t deal with your auto insurance company quickly, it could create problems for you down the line. Before you deal with them, you must first know about the factors that might affect your claim.
Here are a few things that might impact your vehicle insurance claim after an accident.
#1 No Police Report
About five to six million car accidents take place in the United States every year, and over 90% of them get reported to the police.
If you were involved in an accident, one of the first things you should do is contact your insurance company. While it’s generally true that police reports are required for car insurance claims, there are exceptions. It’s important to understand what those exceptions are so that you know whether or not a police report is necessary for your claim.
In some cases, such as hit and runs, no police report is needed because the other driver fled the scene, although you can still file a complaint and ask them to look into the matter. Also, if a collision occurs when there isn’t any visible damage done to either vehicle or any injuries sustained by any parties involved, an official record may not be necessary either.
However, if both cars suffer serious damage and/or someone sustains injuries due to someone else’s negligence, it would be wise to get this information documented through a police report. Otherwise, the insurance company might delay your claim due to the lack of documents.
#2 No Visual Evidence
In addition to having a police report on hand, there should be other forms of photographic or video evidence from the scene during or after an accident occurred. This includes any images taken by witnesses or bystanders who were present at the time of impact.
You should also see if there are any CCTV cameras on the spot where the accident took place. Police can pull the footage from these cameras to further investigate the matter.
Without visual evidence, your insurance company will surely delay your claim. Having visual proof of something helps you to build a solid case, which is needed when filing an insurance claim.
#3 No Legal Backing
Claims can be tricky because they’re based on your individual circumstances and the circumstances of others involved in an accident. Insurance companies may ask for proof of ownership and legal status. They might want photos or videos from before or after an incident and may ask tricky questions regarding the incident itself.
Thus, it would be wise for you to get a lawyer. They can help you navigate these tricky questions and get your claim as quickly as possible. You can also reach out to a personal injury lawyer if you were injured in the accident and want to be compensated for that.
Hire lawyers who practice in the state or region where the accident took place. For instance, you had an accident in St. Louis, Missouri. Thus, you have to get in touch with a personal Injury Lawyer in St. Louis who can help you seek compensation. Such a lawyer will be well-acquainted with state laws and can easily help you out with such legal matters.
Personal injury lawyers can charge between $100 and $500. Some of them will charge a percentage of whatever compensation you receive from the lawsuit. Usually, they take 33% of what you get from the compensation.
#4 No Witness
Your vehicle insurance company may refuse to pay for repairs if you can’t produce a witness. It’s possible that one of your passengers drove away or is no longer willing to cooperate with the investigation, but you should be able to provide proof of the accident regardless.
If there are no witnesses, you’ll have to provide evidence of the accident. If this means capturing video footage or photos of your car after it’s damaged, so be it. These photos will help prove which driver was at fault and get you out of trouble.
Filing an insurance claim after a car accident is not always easy. However, there are ways to make things less difficult. Don’t be afraid to ask your insurer for assistance if you feel like something is holding back your claim from being processed. You may need some extra advice on how to get through a specific obstacle or two before moving forward. Likewise, ask your lawyer for advice too. Their insights, along with the factors we’ve discussed above, will help you navigate the insurance claim more easily.