After an accident, it is important that all drivers involved report the collision to their respective insurers. This must be done as soon as possible. Drivers must also file a report with the police. And they should be given details of the accident, including the police report and the names of any witnesses. Finally, they must exchange insurance information with other motorists involved in the accident.
After a claim has been submitted, the insurer appoints a loss adjuster. The claims adjuster will investigate to determine:
- Who was to blame for the accident?
- How much repairs cost?
- What other losses are covered by the insurance?
If several parties were involved, insurers determine who is responsible for the accident. In some states, accident victims receive compensation for injuries and property damage from the responsible driver’s insurer. In other cases, minor injury compensation is paid by each driver’s own insurer, regardless of who actually caused the accident.
The insurance company responsible for the payment will make a proposal for compensation for damage caused by a car accident. Drivers may have the option to accept the settlement offered or to file a personal injury lawsuit against the motorist at fault for the collision.
If a driver’s own insurer pays out compensation, the driver must pay the auto insurance deductible. And the compensation is limited to policy limits. Depending on how much coverage a driver had, the insurer may pay for:
- Repair of a vehicle or the fair market value of the car if it has been declared a total loss
- Rental car fee
- Loss of wages
- Medical Payments
- Refund of the remaining balance of the car loan if the vehicle is worth less than the amount owed