How to Get Insurance to Pay for Car Damage

How to Get Insurance to Pay for Car Damage

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How to Get Insurance to Pay for Car Damage

If you carry car insurance, this is likely not just because it is legally required to do so—but so that you have a place to turn when you have an accident or experience car damage. Making a car insurance claim is one way to help you get the funds to pay for fixing your vehicle. Unfortunately, it is often a frustrating experience, and insurance companies don’t always make good on their promises.

This is because your insurance company, even though you're a paying customer, does not always have your best interest in mind, and may not do everything possible to help put you in a good position to recover compensation. Understanding how to get insurance to pay for car damage is important because a few tips and tricks can increase your chances of getting the funds that you need.

At Morgan & Morgan, our legal team is here to help you through the whole process to support you if you're having trouble getting insurance to pay for your damages. If at any point you struggle to get your insurance company to be able to pay out the benefits that are owed to you, you need to share this information with an attorney. If you've already provided ample evidence and have continued to communicate with the company about the status of your claim but are not getting results, you may need to hire a lawyer to show that you mean business. 

To get started, contact Morgan & Morgan today for a free, no-obligation case evaluation.

Understanding Car Insurance Claims

You may file an insurance claim after an accident, and many people do. Every single year, over $165 billion in car insurance payouts are made. The action steps needed are typically the same, even though the process and rules can vary slightly between insurance companies and states. Deciding to file your claim is based on the depth of and the cause of the physical damage or injuries. It is always recommended that you communicate quickly regarding any severe damage or bodily injury to your car insurance company, as it is important to get the ball rolling on recovering benefits. 

However, not every accident or incident of damage will necessarily need to lead to a car insurance claim. You may decide that the deductible required or the potential increase in your rates for minor property damage, for example, is not worth the effort of filing a claim. In that case, you may pay out of pocket and decide not to figure out how to get insurance to pay for car damage. However, if you do decide that you want your car insurance company to pay for damage or if you were recently injured in an accident, you need to reach out to your insurance company as soon as you can after the incident and share with them any details and documentation about that accident. 

Auto insurance claims can have a very negative impact on your premium. On average, they increase your car insurance premium by anywhere from 10 to 40%, based on the situation surrounding the accident and the overall insurance company. For this reason, it can be very frustrating for someone who was seriously hurt in an accident caused by someone else to go through the process of watching their rates go up for an action that was not their fault. However, you may have no other option but to turn to your car insurance company if you've been seriously damaged.

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Get answers to commonly asked questions about our legal services and learn how we may assist you with your case.

  • What to Know About Contacting Your Insurance Company?

    One of the most important things to know about how to get insurance to pay for car damage comes in the early stages of filing your claim. You need to contact your insurance company or agent and file a report about the accident as soon as you can.

    You need to be ready to share the following details: who was driving, which car was involved, the time and location of the accident, a general explanation of the accident, and the level of the damage involved, the insurance information and contact details for the other driver and contact information and names for anyone else involved in the accident as well as any witnesses. It can be hard at the scene of the accident to gather all of this information, especially if you're suffering from serious injuries. You may also want to submit a police report so that you have another source of documentation about what happened. 

    Your insurance company will probably request the police report number from you, and even if you did not receive a copy of the report at the accident scene, you can go to your local police station to start a report and to get a copy. The next step of the process is for an adjuster to review your claim. 

    The adjuster might ask for more details about the accident. Do not try to speculate about what happened or accept blame for the accident either. Share any photographs and contact details of the witnesses. The adjuster may tell you more about the different mechanics you can take your vehicle to get an estimate and a repair timeline. Any conversations with your insurance company will be taped and may be used in deciding who was at fault. 

    You may also want to talk with an attorney before this step if you're going to be filing a personal injury claim with the other driver's insurance company. Depending on the specifics of your accident, the car insurance adjuster will look at your vehicle's damage or ask that you take your car to a connected repair location that will complete this inspection. The insurance adjuster will then gather this report and send it to you. Your insurance company takes this estimate into account in figuring out the amount of the payout. In the end, the adjuster will authorize a final payment and then you'll sign your release accepting this offer as your payment. 

    In property damage claims when you're trying to figure out how to get insurance to pay for car damage and you and your insurance company do not agree on the total damage payments, you can attempt to negotiate with them, but this is very hard to do if you do not have an attorney on your side. 

    The attorneys at Morgan & Morgan can assist you when your insurance company has engaged in bad faith practices in an effort to avoid having to pay out a claim. This can be very frustrating for you and can add to the stress of the whole situation. Contacting an experienced and qualified lawyer may be the only way for you to get the most money for car damage. When your claim is covered by your insurance company, you expect that the insurance carrier will cover what is owed.

  • Does Collision Insurance Cover Vehicle Damage?

    You can file vehicle damage claims under a third-party claim against the at-fault driver or your own collision coverage, but you cannot recover compensation for both sources for the same losses. If you choose to pursue your own collision coverage for property damage, you waive any rights to get that same amount from the other driver's insurance for the property damage. To collect a claim under your own collision coverage, you are limited to your coverage caps in the policy. 

    If the collision coverage policy limit is lower than the cost of repairing your vehicle, you will have to pay out of pocket for the remainder of the repair costs unless you're able to settle a claim against the other driver's insurance. Bear in mind that in pursuing your collision coverage for the damage to your car, you may be limited in what you can collect in terms of items inside the vehicle, such as luggage, clothing, or impermanently installed sound equipment. The compensation that you receive under your collision coverage can also be reduced by the deductible of your collision coverage.

  • What to Know About Getting Car Repairs?

    Your insurance company should give you comprehensive instructions about getting your vehicle repaired. Do not attempt to fix anything on your own or with a mechanic before the adjuster can inspect it unless waiting to get it fixed could wind up with further damage or risk to you in the future. You should be able to select your own repair shop and have the final say in which parts you accept for the car although the insurance company's recommendations will usually be able to reduce the bill and make things faster. If you are concerned with the way that the insurance company is handling your auto insurance claim, you may be eligible to contact the company to appeal decisions that you do not agree with or to report concerns about bad faith to the state's insurance regulator. 

    Make sure you consult with qualified attorneys like those working at Morgan & Morgan if you have other questions about the process and need assistance in figuring out what to do next. The lawyers at Morgan & Morgan have extensive experience in helping other people with recovering compensation in difficult injury and property damage claims. Knowing that you have the support of a qualified lawyer goes a long way in addressing these issues.

    To get started, contact us today for a free, no-obligation case evaluation.

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