How car insurance claims work:
Car insurance provides financial protection from risks associated with accidents or damage. When you have to claim car insurance it’s important to know what steps you need to take.
It’s important to make sure that you maintain appropriate communication with your insurance company.
- Call your agent as soon as an accident or injury occurs
- Review your coverage and make sure that you understand exactly what you are covered for and what is excluded in your policy
- Consider whether you must have insurance coverage under some other insurance policy as well. You should also assess your policies to check if your losses are covered by other policies.
- Take pictures of the accident scene
- Be honest about any incidents that occur
- Understand the difference between replacement coverage and depreciated or actual cash value
- Don’t ignore time limits set by your policy. You need to make sure that you submit your claim in time.
- Be insistent about enforcing the contractual obligation. Follow up with the insurance company to make sure that you are covered sufficiently.
What is excess and how does it affect my claims process?
Excess is the amount that you choose to pay before your insurance provider settles your claim. You can choose to pay a higher excess in order to reduce your premiums. Excess attempts to discourage fraud.
It’s important to read your policy very carefully and ask what excesses you can be liable for.
In South Africa because only 35% of cars on roads are insured, if you are involved in an accident, chances are that you will be liable for paying the excess and it’s unlikely that you’ll recover the cost of the damages.
It’s important to consider that there is more than one excess that can be levied on an insurance claim.