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How to Claim Car Insurance After Meeting an Accident in India?

Wish

Written by Sharad Bajaj

Updated Oct 14, 2023

Insurance Claims Process: Step by step guide on car insurance claim process in India.

There can be none amongst us who would ever wish to face an unfortunate accident while driving their car on the road. However, despite the many precautions that an individual might take in order to prevent the chances of a road accident, such an unfortunate event can still happen. According to annual reports by National Crime Records Bureau NCRB, the number of car accidents due to violation of traffic rules and other reasons is only increasing with each passing year. This rise in the number of car accidents has also resulted in an increase in the frequency of car insurance claims.

Now, in order to be prepared for any mishappenings on the road, it is important that you know all about car insurance and how to file claims. We understand that the process of filing claims during such crucial times can be stressful, so today we are going to help you with all the details you need to know about filing a car insurance claim. 

How to Claim Car Insurance After Meeting an Accident in India?

How To File a Car Accident Insurance Claim?

Step 1: Inform the Insurer Immediately:

Immediately after the accident, contact your insurance provider to report the incident. Most insurers have a toll-free helpline, and some offer 24/7 support for claim intimation.

Step 2: Lodge an FIR:

In the case of significant damage or injuries, visit the nearest police station and file an FIR. The police report plays a vital role in the claim settlement process.

Step 3: Document the Incident:

Collect names and contact details of eyewitnesses, take photographs of the accident scene and damages, and jot down the accident’s particulars.

Step 4: Complete the Claim Form:

Fill out the insurance claim form provided by your insurer, either online or in a physical format. Attach all required documents and ensure the information is accurate to avoid claim rejection.

Step 5: Survey and Assessment:

Your insurer will appoint a surveyor to assess the extent of damages. Cooperate with the surveyor and provide any additional information or documentation they might request.

Step 6: Claim Settlement:

Once the survey is complete and the claim is approved, the insurer will settle the claim amount. Depending on your policy type, the payment may go directly to the repair garage, or you might need to pay for repairs first and then seek reimbursement from the insurance company.

By following these steps carefully and ensuring you have all the necessary documents, you can navigate the car accident insurance claim process in India with ease and assurance. Always drive safely, and make sure you understand your policy's terms and coverage limits to be prepared if an accident occurs.

Documents Needed for Car Accident Insurance Claim

After a car accident, it's crucial to gather all necessary documentation to support your insurance claim. Below are the vital documents required:

  1. Insurance Policy Document: It’s imperative to have your car insurance policy handy as it contains essential details and terms of your coverage.
  2. First Information Report (FIR): An FIR is a crucial document which you need to file at the nearest police station post the accident. It is mandatory in case of third-party claims and thefts.
  3. Driving Licence: Your valid driving licence serves as proof of your eligibility to drive and must be presented to the insurance company.
  4. Registration Certificate (RC): The RC of your vehicle proves your vehicle's registration with the Regional Transport Office (RTO).
  5. Medical Receipts (if applicable): If you or any passenger incurred medical expenses due to the accident, save all medical bills and receipts for reimbursement consideration.
  6. Repair Bills and Invoices: After your vehicle has been repaired, ensure to keep all original bills and invoices from the garage or service centre.
  7. Photographs: Images of the damaged vehicle, accident site, and injuries (if any) provide visual evidence of the incident.

Things To Remember While Filing A Car Insurance Claim

There are certain things you need to be mindful of while filing a car insurance claim, some of which are enlisted in the section below:

  • Immediately check yourself and your car after an accident to confirm and determine whether any major bodily injuries or damage is sustained by you or the insured car. Based on the level of damage or injury, you can call for medical assistance or any other support.
  • Do not delay in raising the claim as doing so can result in the denial of your car insurance claim later on.
  • In case of an accident due to a collision with other vehicles, try to note the vehicle number for further verification.
  • Do not enter any misleading or wrong information when filing a claim, as it will straightaway result in the denial of your claim request.
  • In case there is any damage to a third party, do not get involved in any physical or verbal abuse. Inform a police official in such cases immediately.
  • Keep all the documents handy so that there is no problem when you raise a car insurance claim to your insurer. 

Conclusion

In addition to all the things mentioned-above, try to remain calm and composed during the process of filing a motor insurance claim as the overall process can sometimes become tiring. Moreover, try to avoid raising a claim, in case the damage to the car is minimal and can easily be borne from your pocket so that you can take the advantage of NCB benefits provided by different insurers in the future.

FAQs

1. What should I do right away after a car accident?

Make sure everyone is okay after the collision, then notify your insurance company of the event as soon as possible. Take pictures of the accident scene, get the contact details of any witnesses, and, if required, submit a formal complaint.

2. How soon after the accident should I notify my insurance company?

It is best to notify your insurer as soon as possible after the accident, ideally within 24 to 48 hours.

3. Is it necessary to file a FIR for every auto accident insurance claim?

For major damages, injuries, or third-party claims, a formal accident report (FIR) is required even though it is not required for smaller incidents.

4. What if I misplace the paper copy of my insurance policy?

If your policy is online, you can obtain a duplicate copy from your insurance company's website or request one via their official request form.

5. Should I submit a claim even if I lack all of the required paperwork?

Although filing a claim with only the necessary documents—such as a police report, driver's licence, and policy document—will strengthen it, the settlement process may take longer.

6. How long does it take to get the insurance claim for a car accident resolved?

Each insurer has a different claim settlement time. Generally speaking, it could take a few days to a few weeks, depending on the complexity of the claim and the supporting evidence.

7. Can my claim be turned down?

Yes, claims may be denied for a number of reasons, including policy expiration, a driving record that isn't legitimate, or a mismatch between the information submitted and the events that actually occurred.

8. When making an insurance claim for an automobile accident, is there anything I need to pay?

The deductible clause in your policy may require you to make a small payment. Examine your insurance papers to learn about your financial responsibilities in the event of a claim.

9. What if I was at fault for the accident?

In the event that you caused the accident, your insurance company would still pay for the losses covered by your policy; however, your premium may go up when it is renewed.

10. After an accident, may I select my own repair shop?

Insurance companies typically offer cashless services at their network garages. You can choose your own garage, albeit you might have to pay in advance and receive reimbursement afterwards. Always inquire about the particular procedures used by your insurer.

Disclaimer: This article is issued in general public interest and meant for general information purposes only. Readers are advised not to rely on the contents of the article as conclusive in nature and should research further or consult an expert in this regard.

Wish

Written by Sharad Bajaj

Sharad is an insurance industry veteran who has managed motor insurance products for over a decade. Read More

Disclaimer

This article is issued in the general public interest and meant for general information purposes only. Readers are advised not to rely on the contents of the article as conclusive in nature and should research further or consult an expert in this regard.

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